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By matt stott and victoria kalbraier
Monday, January 21, 2013
JUMPING on your sledge, getting your five-a-day and basking in the icy fresh air are the magic ingredients needed to beat the blues.
But Ipswich Town fans may be less keen to obey another of the suggestions supposed to make us all feel cheerier on Blue Monday .. wearing yellow and green, the colours of rivals Norwich City!
“Wear yellow and green, but avoid red and black,” said psychologist Ingrid Collins.
“Green, which is in tune with nature, gives balance, while yellow stimulates happiness and alertness. Bright colours compensate for tiredness.
“However, black can result in fractiousness, and although red raises energy levels, it also provokes irritability.” Some scientists have branded today – the first day of the last full week of January – as the most depressing day of the year as a combination of bad weather, debt and failed New Year resolutions become too much to bear.
But don’t despair, there are ways to make the bleak day seem a little rosier – and the happiest day of the year is just around the corner.
Experts have compiled a list of stress-busting tips to help you smile through today, boost your mood and look forward to the year ahead.
Two weeks after Blue Monday, comes Happy Monday – this year it falls on February 4 – with psychologists pointing to the combination of people getting the first pay packet of the year and booking summer holidays as lifting people’s spirits.
Getting as much natural daylight as possible, going for a stroll and eating healthily can help you feeling upbeat – as can giving up your time to help others, experts told The Star.
Tim Roberts, director of Live Well Suffolk, said exercise and a good dose of fruit and veg could be the key to happiness today.
He said: “Let’s flip this idea of Blue Monday on its head – today can be the day when you build towards a more positive future.
“Smoking is thought to relieve stress, but that is wrong. In fact, the people who quit are a lot more stress-free after a year.
“Eating your five-a-day of fruit and veg and starting to exercise, which releases endorphins, can also help make you feel better.”
Leading behavioural expert Judi James said: “Volunteering is a great way to meet new friends, increase self-confidence and self-esteem and give you a sense of personal achievement.”
Brain injury charity Headway Ipswich and East Suffolk is currently looking for volunteers for their Therapists project.
Chief executive Helen Fairweather said: “The volunteers will help support the qualified therapists working with people with head injuries in one-to-ones as well as support in group settings.”
n How have you banished the winter blues? Write to Your Letters, Ipswich Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org