Most Depressing Day of the Year
While we can’t work any meteorological magic, these strategies can help buoy you during the depressing stretch until spring.
Find Old Friends
After the parade of holiday parties, your normal social calendar may feel Dust Bowl bare. Fill the social gap by calling a buddy you haven’t talked to in years. And don’t worry about awkwardness: In a Rutgers study, men who reached out to once-close friends quickly reestablished their old rapport.
Foment a Resolution
Setting goals without a success strategy may just leave you feeling overwhelmed, says psychiatrist Normal Rosenthal, M.D., author of Winter Blues. Pledged to learn a language? Formulate a detailed plan to help you power forward: Sign up for an intensive course at a community college, watch the nightly news online in your target tongue, or find a foreign-language group in your area at meetup.com. For simple tips to help you reach your goals, check out our complete plans to help you Lose 20 Pounds, Be More Interesting, and Get Promoted in 2013.
Slash Your Debt
Looking at the minimum required payment on your credit card bill will likely reduce the amount you're willing to shell out each month, prolonging your time in the red, a recent Boston College study found. So before you even open your statement, calculate (and commit to) the maximum amount you can pay.
Plan Your Social Calendar
Write down five things you’d like to do in 2013, suggests psychologist Cliff Arnall, who created the formula for the most depressing day of the year. Simply having something to look forward to lifts your mood and gives you a positive focus. Need suggestions? Try one of the challenges on Men’s Health’s Ultimate Fitness Bucket List.
Cut Yourself Some Slack
“Perfectionists are boring and way too stressful to hang out with,” Arnall says. (Thanks for putting that lightly.) That’s not all—a Canadian study found that perfectionists have a 51 percent higher risk of early death than people who didn’t exhibit perfectionist tendencies. The reason? The mountain of stress and anxiety that often goes along with perfectionism, the researchers explain. When you notice yourself trying to do everything perfectly, ask yourself this: What’s more important, to be perfect or to be happy? (Correct answer: Happiness, duh.)
Read more: yahoo