Migraines in Winter
Last updated: March 2023
Winter is not my favorite time of year. It’s cold and dark. The days are short, and the months feel so long. It’s easy to feel more isolated, alone, and down. Add migraines in the mix, and that’s another layer of isolation, loneliness, and feeling down.
Why does winter make me less motivated?
It makes it so easy to fall into a winter slump and slip on all the healthy, self-care habits that support my health throughout the other seasons. I’m not as motivated to move my body, do meal prep, or even take my supplements. And then there’s the emotional side to it.
How does the winter impact my emotions?
Living with migraines, I feel like I must stand guard at the door of my mind and heart. Migraines can trigger emotions of frustration, sadness, and overwhelm – especially in the winter.
I need to be aware of the thoughts and emotions that I give time and space to. I’m a big believer in honoring your emotions – all of your emotions – it’s part of the human experience. It’s not realistic to think that we can live in a place of constant joy and happiness. If anything, that illusion of constant happiness can have us feeling like something is “wrong” if we’re experiencing any emotion outside of joy. We need to make space for the rainbow of emotions we can experience.
How do I process my emotions?
I personally like to process my emotions through journaling or talking with a close friend. I try to journal once a day, even if it’s for five minutes. In fact, the shorter I keep it, the more consistent I am with it each day, and that helps me to feel good. If I try to skip the practice too often or try to ignore feelings, thoughts, and emotions, they can feel like they start to take root and try to stick around longer than they need to.
What does it all have to do with migraine?
This kind of emotional stress certainly doesn’t set me up well for having fewer migraines in the winter months. It can make the migraine days even harder, and it can ruin even our coveted migraine-free days. So, aside from moving to the tropical islands, what can we do to support our health during the winter months?
How can you support your health?
If you like the idea of journaling, you can certainly give that a try. Grab any notebook or pick one up at the dollar store and give yourself five minutes to just write. You can get your thoughts and feelings out, or you could create a gratitude list if you like that practice.
Another important element is having a sense of community in your daily life. Now, I’m the first to say that I don’t want to go out in the cold winter weather or get on the snowy roads, especially on a day when I have a migraine. That’s why I love online communities like this one. We can connect with our people – people who get it – and help each other along the days. This is a community for support, and we’re glad that you’re here.
We all know that life with migraines is not easy, so we’re simply showing up to support one another is getting us through it all and even making some friends along the way.
Which are you most sensitive to?