Stay happy and healthy all winter long

It’s easy to love winter during the holidays — it’s just part of the package. We want to celebrate a white Christmas, build a snowman in the yard, drink hot cocoa and bundle up in hats and scarves and go caroling around town.

But once Dec. 26 hits, the shortcomings of the season stand out. Fewer daylight hours, dry skin, the sniffles, scraping icy windshields in the cold, cabin fever — it’s enough to squash even the most joyful holiday memories, especially considering the long wait for spring.

Let’s get ahead of the drab realities of winter with a few tips and tricks for staying happy and healthy all season long:

The problem – Fewer daylight hours

The fix – Darkness can quickly kill your mood, focus and productivity if you let it. With the sun setting earlier these days, lift your spirits and brighten up your space with a dazzling diffuser and essential oils that can naturally perk you up. Try Dash Essential Oil Blend for a can’t-miss combo of energizing ingredients, or simply use Lemon 100% Pure Essential Oil to keep your senses sharp.

The problem – Dry skin

The fix Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Increase your water intake during the winter months, use a diffuser at home to add moisture to the air and apply a rich, ultra-moisturizing cream as often as you can. If you’re tired of seeing flakes on your favorite sweater or feeling that familiar itch, apply a DIY scalp treatment every few weeks.

The problem – Sniffles

The fix – When it seems like everyone around you is getting sick, fight the urge to skip the gym — regular workouts can help boost your immunity. Also consider adding more Vitamin C to your diet, even if it’s just a glass of orange juice in the morning. When you do feel a cold coming on, get ahead of it with soothing menthol rubs, hot and steamy showers and plenty of comforting chicken noodle soup.

The problem – Icy windshields

The fix – When you have no time to spare, use a DIY deicing solution. Just mix one part water and two parts rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle, spritz your windshield and watch the ice disappear.

The problem – Cabin fever

The fix – Make your home as comfortable and warm as possible! Light a fire, fill your mugs. Then use the downtime to connect with your family. Toss your linens in the wash with a boost of delightful fragrance to keep them smelling fresh, and regularly do the same with your winter gear. Plus, staying in doesn’t have to mean doing nothing. When you get bored, tackle those indoor projects you’ve been meaning to finish, like repainting the guest bedroom or deep-cleaning the kitchen. Try a new hobby, like knitting or playing the guitar, to make long stretches of TV time or downtime more productive.

Before long, the sun will rise on a spring morning and winter woes will be long gone. Until then, try to relish the extra downtime, family time and nighttime (more sleep!).

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