We’ve all been there - maybe you’re feeling isolated for good reason, or maybe you’re surrounded by people, but still feel like you’re going it alone. Both are valid, and both an equally unpleasant feeling that can be hard to escape. If you’re craving a little bit of comfort, we’ve put together this list of songs to help you feel a little less alone and hope you are able to find a moment of peace.
If you’re looking to embrace the Christmas spirit but are finding “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree’ a little too overwhelming, this playlist is filled with lots of chill, calming vibes. It’s the perfect background music for doing a little decorating, wrapping presents, or colouring in a festive, winter-inspired colouring book.
We’re all for a good book - and if you’re looking for a festive, heartwarming read to pick up this holiday season, we’ve got you covered! Each of these books really captures the magic that Christmas is all about: think giving, love, and taking the time to slow down.
Hygge is all about embracing coziness and feel-good vibes. This warm, relaxing playlist is perfect for cuddling up by the fire.
Flume - Bon Iver
Behind Your Eyes - Jon Foreman
Second Chances – Gregory Alan Isakov
People Say - Sramic
Wild Love (Acoustic) - James Bay
Easier- Peter Henry Phillips
The Few Things - JP Saxe, Charlotte Lawrence
lovely (with Khalid) - Billie Eilish
Portland, Maine - Donovan Woods
Sense of Home - Harrison Storm
Find a Way - Quiet Arrows
Burning Ground - Brandon Jenner
It’ll Work Itself Out - Donovan Woods
I Am the Moon - The White Buffalo
Moving in Slow Motion - The Sweet Remains
I Shall Cross This River - The Black Atlantic
Candle in the Wind - Ed Sheeran
Shut up and Dance - Anchor + Bell
From Afar - Scott Quinn
Minimum - Charlie Cunningham
Blanket - Siv Jakobson
Guiding Light - Mumford & Sons
Always Remember Us This Way - Lady Gaga
Pale November Dew - The Dead Tongues
Dreamwood - Hiss Golden Messenger
All or Nothing - Ryan Montbleau & Tall Heights
Northern Sky - Nick Drake
Forever Young - Rhiannon Giddens, Iron & Wine
Waste of Time(Acoustic) - Nathan Ball
Headlights (Stripped) - Nick Wilson
Our Loves Come Back - James Blake
No More Darkness, No More Light - Amos Lee
Gratitude - Benjamin Francis Leftwich
Colouring books for adults are just as popular as ever - and there’s good reason! Sitting down with a colouring book is a wonderful act of self-care as it helps reduce stress and anxiety by forcing you to focus on the present, is a great way to get creative, and can even be an act of mindfulness. Pick up one of these wintery colouring books to get festive with your colouring.
This book is filled with beautiful patterned pages that incorporate trees, snowflakes, ornaments, and more.
This cozy coloring book is filled with a number of gorgeous scenes, like wreaths, candles, ornaments, trees, and deer.
Zendoodle’s colouring books are especially designed with lots of little intricate parts to colour, so you’re able to get as detailed as you like to really escape into the experience of colouring.
This ‘Harry Potter’ colouring book is a fun one to pick up this winter! It’s filled with winter scenes at Hogwarts like the Yule Ball, a DIY 3D wood Firebolt ornament, and 48 colourable gift tags.
If you love getting crafty and sharing your creativity with others, this book filled with cards and envelopes so you can create your own cards to send to family and friends, or spread some cheer to a local hospital or senior’s home, will be a hit.
This coloring book is wonderfully large and is filled with wintery scenes and quotes for you to color in: think cute mugs, mittens, and winter birds.
Inspired by textile designs from Sweden and Norway, this Scandinavian colouring book is wonderfully cozy.
Christmas to Color: ‘Tis the Season to be Stress-Free
This gorgeously illustrated book is filled with everything you love about Christmas, from wreaths to snowflakes and reindeer.
This fun and festive book is filled with ornaments, stockings, and fireplaces.
Because this book is bound at the top and has detachable pages, its perfect for both right and left handers and for sharing pages with friends.
This book is made with paper that is designed to be great for coloured pencils and chalk, but also pens, too, and is filled with a number of festive pages.
This fun book has a festive page for you to colour each day leading up to Christmas. It’s also designed for both adults and children, so its perfect for families.
With Christmas cookies and festive quotes like ‘Let it Snow’ and ‘Silent Night’, these pages make a great addition to your holiday decor, too.
This cute colouring book is filled with pages that are designed to help you capture the magic that is Christmas.
This gorgeous book captures all the beauty of the Nordic wilderness like forests and fjords and wildlife like owls, wolves, and bears. There’s even fold-out pages for panoramic colouring.
We’re in love with this book which contains 30 Christmas cards to colour in with accompanying envelopes with border designs. Five of the cards even have a punch out ornament for a little something extra for your recipient!
This fun book has a 100 theme - which means there’s 100 snowflakes, trees, animals, toys and more. Each item is unique, which means there’s plenty of space for creativity and noticing details.
If you’re looking for a dreamy winter escape, this colouring book is one to check out. There’s plenty of festive scenes, homes decorated for the holidays, and families skating, skiing, sledding, and building snowmen.
Cat lovers will gravitate towards this cheerful book filled with cats and winter and holiday accents.
Inspired by Scandinavian wilderness, this book is filled with folk designs that blend traditional and modern.
This colouring book is filled with 20 festive colouring cards that are perfect for gifting or decorating with.
This fun colouring book is filled with cloths exploring wintertime and is sure to help you channel your inner creative.
If you’re looking to personalize your Christmas tree, this book of colourable ornaments is a great choice. Just colour them and then pop the two pieces out and slot them together - no glue needed!
This book is filled with a number of relaxing patterns, all that feature different holiday designs.
These gorgeous mandalas are inspired by snowflake designs for a relaxing and meditative colouring experience.
Designed for those who have experience with colouring, this book is filled with 31 winter scenes to help inspire your own creativity, like chickadees, snowmen, snowflakes, cookies, and more.
Explore Glacier National Park from the comfort of your own home with this colouring book, featuring images like lodges, wildlife, glaciers, waterfalls, and lakes. The book also comes with eight postcards and four bookmarks you can colour, too.
Get all snugly and cozy with this hygge-inspired colouring book.
Winter Wonderland: A Magical Coloring Adventure
This book is filled with a number of gorgeous, winter-inspired scenes like forests, winter wilderness, and gorgeously decorated cities.
Whether you deal with chronic insomnia, or you’ve just spent way too many nights tossing and turning, you know the effect that sleep can have on how you feel. In addition to feeling just plain tired, you might also have difficulty concentrating, feel a little more easily irritated, or experience more symptoms like headaches. In addition to other good sleep hygiene, your diet can play a huge role in helping you to get a restful night’s sleep.
Chocolate Cherry Green Smoothie // Root + Revel
Cherries help to increase melatonin, making them a great fruit to help with healthy sleep habits. This yummy smoothie pairs chocolate with cherries, and has hidden greens and protein for added nutrition.
Dreamy Pink Moon Milk // Choosing Chia
Moon milk is a bedtime drink that is specially designed to be calming. This moon milk gets its beautiful pink colour from the addition of tart cherry juice and anti-inflammatory beets.
Blueberry Moon Milk // One Armed Mama
This gorgeous moon milk is made with blueberries and adaptogens designed to help with relaxation, as well as warming spices like turmeric, ginger, and cinnamon.
Sleepy Time Spiced Apple Cider // Reclaiming Yesterday
This delicious warm and spicy apple cider is made with a herbal extract that is intended to help promote sleep, making it the perfect drink to wind down with before bed.
Rosehip Chamomile Tea Latte // Meg is Well
Chamomile tea is an excellent option for winding down before bed, and this delicious latte combines it with calming rosehip simple syrup.
Tart Cherry Sleepytime Elixir // Abra’s Kitchen
This calming warm drink is packed full of ingredients designed to help you relax into a deep sleep, including cherries, lavender, and chamomile.
Cherry Time Sleep Shake // Cotter Crunch
With tart cherry juice and valerian to help calm the nervous system, this tasty smoothie also has protein to help keep blood sugar levels stable throughout the night.
Cherry Turmeric Bedtime Tea // Love and Zest
Make your own Sleepytime tea with this recipe made with tart cherries, chamomile tea, turmeric, and ginger.
Chamomile Tea Latte // Oh How Civilized
With vanilla and chamomile, this frothy, creamy drink is a delicious warm drink and a great alternative to your afternoon latte.
Sweet Potato Breakfast Bowl // Healthy Liv
Sweet potato is a complex carbohydrate which is helpful for promoting sleep, plus they also contain potassium, which is a natural muscle relaxer. Though it’s called a breakfast bowl, this sweet potato bowl is perfect for bedtime too, topped with nuts, nut butter, and cinnamon.
Pecan Pie Baked Oatmeal // Lively Table
Oatmeal is another great complex carb that is helpful for restful sleep, plus nuts are a great source of healthy fats and protein to help keep you feeling satiated throughout the night.
Sweet Potato Nice Cream Split // Feasting on Fruit
Though a bowl of ice cream sounds delicious before bed, the truth is that its not the best option to help you get a good night’s rest. Instead, try this healthier twist on a banana split, made with a sweet potato for complex carbs, and ice cream made out of bananas, to help relax your body.
Sweet Potato Quinoa Muffins // Ilona’s Passion
As we’ve mentioned, sweet potato is a great complex carb to help with sleep, and quinoa is, too! These muffins also have chocolate chips and added chocolate, so they taste delicious!
Almond Butter Banana Protein Balls // The Real Food Dietitians
A protein-rich snack can be a great option before bed because it helps to keep your blood sugar levels stable. These bites have a great blend of protein, fats, and carbs, plus the almond butter, banana, and chocolate chip combo is amazing.
Sweet Potato Coconut Mash // Haute & Healthy Living
This fun twist on mashed potatoes is a great option to have as a side dish or, because it’s a little sweet with the addition of maple, coconut, and chopped pecans, it can also be a sweet snack before bed.
Maple Cinnamon Roasted Sweet Potatoes // Nourished the Blog
We love this twist on roasted sweet potatoes, topped with maple and cinnamon! Like the mashed potatoes, they make a great snack, or can be part of your dinner to help prepare your body for sleep.
Dark Chocolate Blueberry Mac Nut Clusters // Fun Without FODMAPS
If you need a little bit of chocolate before bed, these nut clusters are a great option. Choosing a dark chocolate that is rich in magnesium can help with sleep, plus coconut oil and macadamia nuts will help keep you feeling satisfied.
Flourless Peanut Butter Banana Muffins // Chef Savvy
These muffins are quick to whip up in your blender, and have potassium from the bananas, as well as protein from the peanut butter and eggs!
Soft-Baked Banana Oatmeal Bars // Five Heart Home
These yummy soft-baked bars make a great bedtime snack, thanks to the complex carbs from oatmeal as well as potassium from the banana, plus you can add nuts if you’d like.
As we move closer and closer to the winter months, unfortunately this means that those who are prone to SAD, or seasonal affective disorder, might begin to experience symptoms like low mood, sleep problems, changes in appetite, and increased fatigue, among other symptoms. If you’re someone who is prone to developing seasonal depression, or a more mild case of the winter blues, practicing self-care habits that are targeted towards SAD can help to make this season more manageable.
Have a Cup of Warm Tea
Though it's always soothing to sip on a warm mug of tea, this self-care suggestion goes beyond that. Herbal tea is hydrating, and is often an easy way to increase your water intake in the winter, when you may not want to reach for cold drinks.
Excercise is known to be an effective treatment for seasonal affective disorder, however, increased fatigue and a lack of motivation can make if difficult (or seemingly impossible) to be active. Yoga is a gentle practice that can help you to get your body moving without taking too much out of you.
Certain nutritional deficiencies can contribute to SAD, so making taking any necessary supplements a part of your daily self-care can help you to manage symptoms. Vitamin D supplementation in particular has been shown to be helpful. Consider asking your doctor to check your vitamin D levels to see if supplementation may be helpful for you.
Go to Bed Early
When you think about the natural daylight cycles in autumn and winter, it’s only natural that we’re tired earlier as there’s less daylight. It’s alright to give into this season of hibernation and accept that you might need an earlier bedtime in the winter than you might in the summer.
Journaling is shown to be helpful for depression in helping you to track your mood, becoming more in-tune with yourself, and help you get out any negative thoughts that you may have swirling around in your head. A gratitude journal can be especially helpful, where you try to focus on a couple of things that you are thankful for each day.
Get Out of the House
When you’re experiencing difficulties associated with depression, it can be very easy to fall into wanting to stay inside and avoiding being social. Making a point to meet up with a friend or checking out a local coffee house or book store can be a wonderful act of self-care.
Take Advantage of Natural Light
There might not seem like as many opportunities to see natural daylight as other times of the year, but it’s still out there! Even just opening your blinds on a day where the sun is shining can be helpful.
Certain essential oils can help with stimulation, meaning that incorporating aromatherapy into your self-care routine can be helpful in dealing with some of the symptoms of seasonal depression. Basil, bergamot, and citrus oils like grapefruit are all known to be uplifting. If you struggle more with winding down, lavender, rose, and frankinscense essential oils can be soothing. Try diffusing these oils, or use bath and body products that feature these scents.
Put Down Digital Devices
While there’s nothing wrong with a good Netflix binge, if it’s making you feel worse rather than relaxed and rested, it might be time to step aside from the screen for a bit. It’s very easy to rely on our digital devices more and more when the weather isn’t as nice, so be sure to check in with how you’re responding mentally to your increased screen time, and consider turning to other activities if necessary.
Ask Your Doctor for Help
Like other mental health issues, asking a professional for help is often necessary, and its okay. Scheduling appointments with your doctor and following through with their care instructions is an important part of your self-care, too.
We could all use a little extra boost of inspiration now and again! These books are some of our top picks for when you need a little extra boost, time to reflect, or inspirational words as a practice of self-care.
Written by Nina Riggs, a woman who was diagnosed with terminal breast cancer, this memoir focuses on living a meaningful, positive life, even if you have limited time, and is a moving book that about the power of living your best life.
A productivity book written just for women, this book focuses on helping you to choose the three areas in your life that mean the most to you and focusing on them, while unloading all the rest to help you feel like you’re living your best life.
Girl, Wash Your Face is an essential book for beating all the limiting, untrue thoughts that you tell yourself with a welcome dose of honesty and humour.
Though all of Brene Brown’s books are very inspiration, Dare to Lead focuses on developing leadership and the courage to stay curious about new ideas, share our power with others, and be vulnerable so we can do better.
Written by the creator of Hamilton, Gmorning, Gnight!, is a book filled with affirmations to start and end your day with, complete with accompanying illustrations.
A different twist on the classic self-help book, this book’s message is to look within yourself, focusing on understanding yourself better and following your truth.
Written by one of our favourite poets, r.h. Sin, this book of poetry is designed to be a safe place for women to let go and reflect on themselves.
Focused on making time for what matters rather than becoming more productive, Make Time is full of little shifts that you can incorporate into your life without completely overhauling everything, making it a practical guide to feeling like you have more hours in your day.
In a collection of several honest, comforting essays, Shauna Niequist shares her journey of moving away from focusing on perfection and, instead, being present in all of life’s incredibly messy experiences.
This powerful book focuses on finding little pieces of hope and little bits of light, to help you focus on feeling more moments of joy in your life.
The Year of Less documents Cait Flander’s year of purchasing nothing but consumables, which may inspire you to practice your own ideas of decluttering, making use of what you have, and breaking the cycle of buying things that don’t bring you joy.
Using research from both neuroscience and psychology, Ingrid Fetell Lee talks about the impact that our environment has on our mood and emotions, teaching you how to use this to boost your happiness and reduce stress.
Created by two editors of mindbodygreen, The Spirit Almanac is the essential guide to self-care. The books features suggestions from a variety of experts, including reiki healers and psychologists, to introduce you to forms of self-care that will work for you.
Neil Gaiman’s book focuses on the importance of art, imagination, and creativity, in this book filled with inspiration about the impact of multiple mediums of art.
From the star of This is Us, This is Me is a vulnerable and honest look into Chrissy Metz’s journey, and is both relateable and inspiring.
If you constantly feel like life is moving too fast, this book provides a welcome reprieve. With sections on decluttering and mindfulness, this book provides a great look into simple living.
Written by two meditation teachers, this book is all about incorporating meditation into your daily life, and is especially great for people with busy careers.
From the author of the guided journal Start Where You Are, Made Out of Stars is yet another gorgeous guided journal packed with beautiful illustrations. This edition focuses on helping you to explore what makes you truly special.
Written by Dr. Ellen Hendriksen, How to Be Yourself is a book designed for anyone who second guesses themselves in social situations. The book is filled with tips to help your feel more confident in being yourself.