ETSU Expert Offers Tips for Dealing with Winter Stress

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Johnson City – For some, the onset of winter signals the holidays, a time of celebration and joy. But for others, gray days and long nights are periods accentuated by increased stress, anxiety, or depression.

To help, experts from the East Tennessee State University Counseling Center provided a variety of tips for getting through the cold weather.

“People are different,” said Cynthia Milhone. “So pick one that fits you and your personality and tastes.”

going well

Getting out in unity is a huge step towards better mental health.

“Sunshine and fresh air are essential for good mental health,” says Milhone.

Hitting play on your favorite playlist, throwing a private dance party, or hitting the gym for a workout or new class are other great options.

“Being with other people and moving around is really good for your mental health,” she added.

rest and recover

Eating nutritious, nutritious foods helps provide the body with the proper fuel. Also important: rest. Humans need quality sleep all year round, but especially in the winter.

“With less sunlight, cooler temperatures, and more stress from holidays, travel, work, family, school, and interruptions to schedules and routines, you’ll naturally feel tired, so get extra sleep,” she says. said.

Practicing meditation and mindfulness can also be very helpful. Whether at home or outside, it’s important to create a space where you can be quiet and express gratitude.

“Having gratitude and making it a daily habit really lifts your mood and creates a deep, resonant joy that transcends the current situation and the stress you may be experiencing,” adds Milhone. rice field.

A daily gratitude journal can help with that, she said.


Relationships are essential to improving mental health.

“Having a support system and a relationship is so important and feeling like you don’t have it can be discouraging,” she said. Please try new activities.”

A new hobby can help. Taking an art class or participating in a new activity is a good start. ETSU hosts a variety of events, many of which are free.

She said there are benefits to disconnecting from social media from time to time.

“We weren’t meant to absorb so much stressful information,” Millhorn said. “So be human and detach. Be free to be in your orbit and don’t take on too much.”

Need help?

Always consult a professional if you feel you need help.

“One of the bravest things you can do is reach out when you’re in a dark place, or recognize that you can’t go it alone,” she said.

Always call 911 if you are in danger or have a life-threatening emergency. ETSU students, faculty and staff experiencing a non-life threatening emotional crisis may call (423) 439-4841 and press 2 to speak with a licensed counselor.

For more information on Counseling Centers, visit


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