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Safely Combatting the Winter Covid Blues

As the days continue to shorten and temperatures continue to drop, seasonal affective disorder affects many people in Michigan during the winter. This on top of the stress related to the coronavirus, can make what should be the most wonderful time of the year, into one of the most stressful times of the year. Fortunately, with the Pfizer vaccine’s recent authorization, there is finally light at the end of this tunnel. Until the vaccine is broadly distributed, we all must do our part to stay home and stay safe so that we can beat this virus together.

We have some tips on how the TLD team is staying positive during this dark and snowy time of the year.

Get Active 

Take a Walk

Even if it’s just around your neighborhood, getting moving is a great way to brighten up your mood. Admire the Christmas lights in your neighborhood and wave at neighbors! Everyone could use a little bit of connection these days.

Would you like to Build a Snowman?

Michiganders can take a page out of Norwegian’s book and embrace Friluftsliv” or a “free, outdoor life.” Bundle up, get outside, go sledding, even if you haven’t done that since you were small.

Forage a Wreath

While hiking in the great outdoors (try to get some sunshine in when possible!), snip a few branches and forage a wreath. Check out these tips for a sustainable wreath here!

Chat with Friends & Family

It’s truly refreshing to talk to folks outside of your household!

Give them a ring!

We’re all getting a little bit of zoom fatigue these days. So pick up the phone and call a friend or family member! It’s fun to be spontaneous, but you can also organize to do an activity together. For example, follow along with the same recipe, have a happy hour, or even watch a movie in unison (try Netflix Party or Amazon Watch Party).

Write a Letter

Take a break from screens and grab your favorite pen! Sending letters to loved ones is a nice way to show you care. A handwritten note is sure to bring a smile to your family member’s face — especially when getting the mail has become one of the most anticipated activities of the day during quarantine.

Help others 

During a difficult year, it’s important to be thankful for what you have and give when possible.

Volunteer

If you’re comfortable, some non-profits offer distanced and safe volunteering opportunities. Check in with your favorite local organizations to make a difference in your community. Plus, some are even organizing virtual volunteer opportunities so you don’t even have to leave the house!

Donate 

Whether you have extra canned goods, returnables, or cash, you can donate to many organizations that help those facing food and housing insecurity during this time. Check out this list of organizations making an impact on Michigan’s food system!

Help Yourself 

It’s easy to let taking care of yourself fall to the wayside, but make it a priority this winter!

Treat yourself

You’ve been cooking a lot, so why not order takeout from your favorite local restaurant? Not only does it save you from doing the dishes, but supports a small business!

This also goes for other things – whether its a fancy face wash or a new pair of mittens, however treating yourself looks to you is totally warranted.

Eat Well

The cold and dark doesn’t exactly scream salad weather, but try to get in those greens and other veggies. Those extra vitamins take care of you from the inside out!

How are you taking care of yourself through this dark winter?

We wish you well on the final days of 2020. We are thankful for you, our readers, our partners, and all members of Michigan’s local food system. Here’s hoping 2021 offers new beginnings!

Emma Beauchamp is the Communications Manager for Taste the Local Difference. Contact her at [email protected]

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  in CoVID-19, Health