How to Survive November

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Dear November,

Why are you such a hard month?

I think we can all agree that November is one of the hardest months of the year. It’s getting colder, it is windy, and most importantly, it’s dark so early—no wonder why to tend to feel so low during this month.

November is a month of transition. The transition between the warm and sunny season to the cold and dark season. However, the good thing is, despite all the negative things that come with winter, there are also some good things to look forward to. Can you think of one?

So in this post, I am sharing with you my best tips/things to do to survive November and, therefore, make the transition to the cold period more enjoyable and less depressing. Let’s start!

Switch to cozy clothes

Summer is gone, so we can let “being fashion” to sleep too. The keyword to make November more enjoyable is comfort. Put these skinny jeans pairs in a box, and switch to sweatpants. Take out your cozy knits, cardigans, and big comfortable socks.

woman wearing warm socks and slippers
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Every autumn, around October/November, I put my summer clothes in a box and take out my warmer clothes. Switching my wardrobe is a way to help me make the transition between summer and winter. It makes you look forward to wearing those comfortable knits and fluffy pajamas that have been ignored for the past months. It’s a spark of happiness!

A few years ago, I received a “snuggly,” which is like a hoodie robe. This is the best thing for the cold season! It also makes a great Christmas gift;)

Clean your space

Another tip to help survive November is to keep your place clean. Motivation can be pretty low at the end of the day when it’s already dark outside, so you will be happy to return home to a clean space. 

white pillows on a bed
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Cleaning is a great mood booster! If you need to clear your mind from work, school, or what is happening in your personal life, take a moment to clean your surrounding, and you will instantly feel better. Clearing your living space will make you feel like you accomplished something and that you have been productive without asking yourself too much. Put on good music, light up a candle, have some snacks nearby, and get to work!

Need help figuring out where to start? Use my guide below!

Treat yourself…with actual treats

November is the season to treat yourself! There is no need to worry about the “beach body” (not that I support this), but we are wearing big cozy clothes anyway…so why not enjoy the perks of it. I added a little jar with candies and chocolates on my desk, and it does help me find some motivation to get through my work. One step on my checklist completed…one chocolate!

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Also, I feel like November and winter are generally the best seasons for going to coffee shops. It’s even cozier when it’s dark and windy outside. So get yourself the fantastic caramel macchiato at 7$….pricy.. but oh so worth it;)

Don’t ask yourself too much

Let’s not forget that most mammals hibernate during winter. We don’t. Therefore, I am not exaggerating if I say that we should expect less from ourselves than we do when it’s all sunny and warm outside. Lowering your expectations towards what you need to accomplish is another way to “acclimate” yourself to the cold period. Identity what needs to be done, but don’t surcharge yourself.

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By changing our clocks to daylight saving time, it is also normal to feel more tired in the evening. I noticed that I was going to bed earlier than I used to a few weeks ago. In that sense, I’ve been waking up earlier, allowing me to enjoy my morning time and the light. I am a night owl during summer and a morning bird during winter. What about you? Are you more of a morning person during winter too?

It’s okay to feel more emotional.

Don’t worry; you are not alone. “Winter blues” are actually a thing. According to verywellmind.com, winter blues are associated with sadness during the cold season, some trouble sleeping, and a lack of motivation. Winter blues are something that many people can experience when the days get shorter and when there is less light. 

person sitting on brown wood log
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However, if you feel like this sadness and lack of motivation is an obstacle to your day-to-day life, it can also be a seasonal affective disorder (SAD), which is an actual disorder that needs attention. For more information about the difference between the winter blues and SAD, click here.

Transform the darkness into hygge

One way to deal with the lack of light we experience during November is to turn this negative situation into…hygge!

Hygge

“a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being” -Oxford Languages

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If you are not familiar with hygge (Danish and Norwegian word), hygge is everything related to a feeling of comfort and safety. It also often comes in a situation that presents both extremes. Let’s say it is dark outside, raining and windy, but inside your house, it’s warm, and there is a fire in the chimney ; this would be hygge in its purest form.

There is also a conviviality aspect linked to hygge. Indeed, being surrounded by your loved ones and sharing a good meal while it’s pouring outside is also hygge. So here are a few tips on how you can incorporate hygge in your life:

The Hygge List

  • Candles (they are the most hygge object)
  • Comfort food
  • Look at family pictures or souvenirs with friends
  • Watch a movie with blankets and warm socks
  • Baking
  • Enjoy a good book in your bed at the end of the day
  • Make your living space cozy with blankets, pillows, and fairy lights
  • Spend time with your family (what about a board games night?)
  • Drink a cup of hot chocolate or mulled wine!

If you want to learn more about hygge, I suggest one of my favorite books: The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking. It is THE GUIDE to becoming a hygge expert! From how to make your home hygge to statistics about how hygge makes the Danes the happiest people on earth to hygge activities on a budget, this book has EVERYTHING!

Also, check out my other previous posts where I talk about hygge:

This is it for my “survival guide” to November! I hope you enjoyed it and gave you some ideas to make this month more enjoyable. Finally, my last tip would be to find something to look forward to. Whether it is Christmas that is coming, or tickets for a show you want to see (hum, hum, Taylor Swift fans, where are you), I think one of the best ways to get through a more challenging month is to have something exciting to look forward to.

Until then, take care and…see you next post!

Juliette

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Yan:)

Wow, great post as usual! keep up the excellent work!

Yan:)

Usually, I would say I’m a night owl all year round. Though in the last few years I’ve been more of an exhausted pigeon, unfortunately!

Marie-Claude

Wow Bravo Juliette!! J’ai adoré lire cet article.
De mon côté, le changement d’heure me rend plus difficile à sortir du lit☺️ Adepte du Hygge en devenir, je veux rester ds le confort douillet😉☺️

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