Is it just me or is winter the longest f’ing season on the calendar? For 85% of the country, it is synonymous with punishing cold and misery. From mid-November to late-April, your only respite becomes a blanket fort and a fifth of rum. You start to get SAD. I don’t mean boo-hoo sad. I mean, full on “I haven’t seen the sun in two weeks and everything is terrible” seasonal affective disorder. Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to turn this:

“Everything sucks.”

Into this:

“There’s something so poetic about the texture of snowflakes on my skin.”

Step one: Find a hot tub. This is, without a doubt, the most important thing you can do for your winter mental health. Become friends with people in nice apartment buildings. Join a cushy gym. Invest in a spa day. Don’t discount outdoor hot tubs either: there’s nothing more enjoyable than sipping a cool bev in your bubbling tub during a snow storm.

Disclaimer: I’m from Minnesota.

Step two: start getting ripped. I know the last thing you want to do when it’s cold out is lace up your kicks and hit the gym, but good old fashion exercise will improve your mood and help you lose that fudge weight you put on over the holidays. Not to mention, it gives you an excuse to buy cute cold weather exercise gear.

Step three: cactus-hoard any sun you can find. Hoard it early by opening your curtains before you go to bed. Hoard it often by leaving your windowless desk for more than ten minutes a day. You’re not so important that you can’t have a fifteen minute lunch break to take a damn walk.

Pro tip: tanning bed. #sorrynotsorry

Step four: Improve coziness wherever possible. Consider investing in some new blankets and pillows for home. Maybe a snuggie for the office. It’s never too late in the season to turn on a fireplace recording and sit next to your radiator in hopes of tricking your body into thinking you’re next to a roaring hearth. By the way, do you have enough scarves? Get more scarves.

Adopt a dog or boyfriend to keep you warm.

Step five: While we’re on the subject of coziness, spend the next few weeks perfecting a few delicious and hearty winter meals. Not only will you warm your spirit, but heating your house with your a stove is way cheaper than buying 250 gallons of heating oil. PS. You didn’t hear that here.

Step six: I know your bed is the only place you want to spend any times these days, but the longer you ignore your friends and become vampire pale, the worse you will feel. Instead of hating the snow, maybe it’s time to embrace it by picking up a winter hobby. Try a low-investment option like sledding on shovels and garbage can lids. Or if you’re looking to try something more athletic buy some snowshoes or take a skiing lesson.

Step seven: Finally, it’s important to remember that awful things can’t last forever. In this season of endless grey, give yourself things to look forward to. It doesn’t have to be big; dinners with friends, movie nights at home, day trips to a local destination, literally any event that involves liquoring yourself a thermal jacket. Anything to brighten your outlook on life.

“Any fun plans for the weekend?”

If all else fails, build a snow fort I guess?

Or… if you live in Boston, come to our ‘F*** Your Couch’ party on 2/21 at The Brahmin from 8:30pm – close! We’re giving away prizes and will be doing a whole lot of drinking. Get your tickets here!

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