Surviving January

Photo courtesy of Dafne Cholet and

January has arrived.  Where I live in North Carolina, we’ve had many more cloudy days than sunny ones.  It’s cold, and it gets dark early.  Not to mention, we’ve already had one minor coating of ice and most likely will have more.  Oh, and let’s not forget that the Holidays are long forgotten with the only remains being the garland, bows, and lights that need to be put up this weekend.

During this time of year, the blues can stalk me like a hunter keeping to the shadows.  It follows me around and tries to tell me that I’m not that great of a writer, or I’m a failure at work or as a wife.  For lack of a better term, it bears a resemblance to a spiritual attack of sorts.  I’ve learned two things.

First, those are lies.

Second, this too shall pass.

Is January a hard month for you as well now that the excitement of the Holidays only echoes in your mind?  Maybe you feel bereft because of a family spat or because the dark, dreary days make it difficult to process a recent loss.

I urge you to take hope.

Here’s some ways I’ve learned can help you to survive January.

  • This too shall pass. January is a finite month. Thirty-one days, to be exact. This post marks the point where we’re more than halfway through. Remedy: Keep a calendar and cross out each day as it happens.
  • Light plays a big role in how we feel. Like it or not, we humans do have a level of sensitivity to the amount of light we have. It’s easy to feel down when there seems to be more dark than light and when rain, snow, and clouds make dusk arrive even earlier. Remedy: When it’s sunny, take time outside. Even an hour may lift your spirits.
  • Plan fun activities. Usually in January, we struggle to get back into the routine of work and school. It’s easy to forget to have some fun during that time. Remedy: Make plans to do something you might not do. For example, Steve and I are headed to the World’s Toughest Rodeo tomorrow night. Do we normally got to rodeos? Nope. But it gives us something to look forward to.
  • Don’t stress over missed resolutions. Face it. Lots of us make resolutions that we quickly break. It’s easy to start beating ourselves up about that. Remedy: Make goals instead. If you say you’re going to lose weight, take a look at that and set a goal you can attain. See my post on making goals and not resolutions.
  • Plan a trip. One of the big things that gets me down is to arrive at January and not have anything to look forward over the next few months. Remedy: Start planning a trip for later in the winter or spring. Don’t have a lot of money? Your trip doesn’t have to be a week long or to an exotic locale. It can be a weekend at the beach or that cozy cabin in the mountains. Steve and I typically plan a weekend away in late February, then a trip later that spring that’s longer.

Hang in there this month.  January stinks in a lot of ways, but God gives us these hard months for a reason.  And that’s to remember that while we may have difficulties, He also brings us into periods of rest by the natural change in the seasons.  Me?  I’ll be looking forward to spring.

Question:  How do you battle the January blues?

This post does not mention any products.  Therefore, I am not receiving any compensation for writing this post.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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    The Conversation

  1. Debbie Scott says:

    Jennifer, I just dropped by to say hi and to share with you how much I delighted in reading both your novels. You are very blessed and gifted! Thanks for extending yourself and developing your talent for “sharing and shaping” words into clever stories.

    Please keep your wonderful novels coming- I am eagerly awaiting your next one!
    Debbie Scott of Colorado Springs

    • Jennifer Haynie says:

      Thank you! I appreciate your kind words. Stay tuned because my next novel, Panama Deception, will be coming out in the spring. My goal is March, but it may be April. I’ll keep my website updated as we get closer to launch.