If there’s one thing that I’ve learnt about myself over the course of writing this blog for the past couple of years, it’s that I’m kind of obsessed with the seasons. I just can’t help myself from making mention of the seasons in the vast majority of posts. I guess it’s an occupational hazard of being British ;) The constant changes and relentlessly regular pattern of the year appeal both to my innate impatience, and the part of me that thrives on predictability.

As much as the winter months are probably my favourite (just don’t ask me to say that when it comes to spring and summer, okay?), I do find it’s harder to keep energised and positive during autumn and winter. The dark mornings, darker evenings, and the cold that gets right in to your bones make it tricky not to just camp out in bed, and allow the day to just slip away. I know *so* many people who struggle with keeping positive during the winter months, and I find my own outlook tends to be less uplifted from around this time of year right through until spring.

And so, on that note, here are five of my favourite ways for staying chipper and motivated during the autumn and winter months! ::

1 :: Set just one alarm. {and don’t even think about hitting snooze;) }
All through summer I found it easy as pie to get up in the morning. My 7am alarm would sound, I’d swipe to turn it off (iPhone, you see), then hop straight out of bed in a manner so chipper it was kind of sick-making. As the mornings have been getting darker and darker though, it’s been more challenging to rise quite so promptly. Best way to combat a serious case of the Just Five More Minutes, I’ve found, is to set just one single alarm right at the time you actually need to get up (not 15 minutes beforehand, it’ll only make it easier to drift back off to sleep) and then flip the covers off the very second it starts sounding. Setting several alarms means that when it goes off in the morning, there isn’t quite that same ‘ooh my alarm is going that means I have to wake up’ trigger, and so it’s waaaay too easy to ignore and go back to sleep. {Keeping a stash of cosy layers and your favourite slippers down by the side of the bed for putting on as soon as you get up helps a lot, too}

2 :: Get outside.
Even when it’s raining (okay, maybe not when it’s raining…). But I believe a dose of fresh air each day helps beat out the winter blues…even when that fresh air is kind of frosty.

3 :: Switch the lights on.
We’re sensible people. We try to stick to the whole ‘leave a room, switch off the light’ thing (if Jason were reading this write now, he’d be scoff-laughing because he is ALWAYS nagging me to remember that rule ;) but during the winter months, all bets are off. I just can’t deal with having a dark house during winter. The hall lamp and kitchen lights get left on pretty much constantly, and much to my fiancé’s dismay, I tend to leave a little trail of lights on wherever I go. Economical it’s not. But as a way of dealing with short, dingy winter days? It’s a good’un.

4 :: Make evening plans {even when you’d rather stay home}
This is my personal nemesis. The urge to curl up on the sofa and hide away is pretty strong in me anyway, but couple that with cold/wet weather and the dark? Goodbye world, hello hiding under the duvet on the sofa. Which is great and all, but come mid-January, I tend to go a bit stir crazy. So try making a few evening plans (dinner out, fun courses at a local adult education centre, cinema trips, date night at a local bar, Pilates/yoga classes) and make the most of it being dark enough that you don’t have to bother shaving your legs ;)

5 :: Embrace the cosy!
Just give in to the cliches of autumn and winter, and ham it right up. Pretend you live in your favourite Pinterest board. I’m talking candles everywhere. Blankets on the bed, sofas, chairs, + round your shoulders. Hot chocolate/tea/coffee several times a day. Wear as much tartan as you can get your hands on. Treat yourself to something made of cashmere, wear it until it’s full of holes, then sew them up and wear it some more. Bung up a few strings of fairy lights (and ignore your fiancé when he tuts about them all being blown by the time Christmas comes around).

Embrace and indulge in all the silly, beautiful parts of the winter months, let them fill your heart in the way that only beautiful, silly things can, and wear them like armour when it’s so cold your fingers feel like ice lollies, and it’s dark by 4pm.

I don’t know about you, but after all that I feel just about ready for the clocks to go back!

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