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Seven Ways to Stick It To Winter

You know that proper-good feeling you get after doing something nice for a mate? Well, it’s actually backed by science that helping others can make you feel good. At CALM, we know this time of year can be crap, so we’re asking you to join us and Stick It To Winter.

After the hectic lead up to Christmas, it’s no surprise that the new year can leave us with the motivation of a sloth. It’s normal to feel a bit bleh after such a busy time, and the shorter, colder, wetter days can really put a downer on things.

Things tend to feel much harder when the sun’s not shining. In fact, It’s estimated that around 3 in 100 people struggle with seasonal depression at some point in their lives. Add to this the heavy, overwhelming stuff going on in the world right now and the winter blues can really drag you down.

Do something bold to beat the cold

Looking for ways to get through this last slog before spring? Do something to really Stick It To Winter. Shave your head, take a cold shower every day for a month, or even come up with your own challenge – whatever you take on, do something bold to beat the cold. It couldn’t be simpler.

  • Choose a challenge - there’s loads of ace inspo below

  • Tag us on social media and share your photos using the hashtag #StickItToWinter (the sillier the better). You might even make it into our hall of fame.

You don’t need to raise a lot of cash to support CALM – just £8 can help fund a potentially life-saving phone call. Stuck for ideas? Here’s some to get you started.

  • Take a cold shower every morning for a month (expletives allowed)

Studies have shown that a cold shower can do pretty great things for your head. Granted, it’s not for the faint hearted, but a speedy rinse under cold water triggers the release of endorphins - the hormones that make us feel good. And as Stick It To Winter challenges go, there’s not much that says ‘stuff you winter’ than withstanding a sub-zero shower. Right?

  • Host a comedy or karaoke night

Fancy yourself as a funny man? Wanna see your mates tackle Tragedy dance routine and all? Sorted. Challenge your friends and family to come up with their own standup set, or take it in turns to ruin your favourite songs – you might be surprised by people’s hidden talents.

A good belly laugh can do a lot for our mental wellbeing, helping us release tension, increasing those feel-good hormones and even reducing stress. So borrow your aunt’s sparkly frock, dust off your wig and warble that Adele number to give your mates a good giggle.

  • Eat something weird or cook something new

Get creative in the kitchen to support our services. Whether you’re into baking tray buffets or Michelin star plates, fundraising with food doesn’t have to be fiddly. Host a dinner party, learn to cook your favourite meal (zero judgement if that’s beans on toast) or wing it and cook up a storm. Nothing beats comfort food when it’s dark and dingy, plus mastering a new skill can feel good, boost your confidence and give you something positive to focus on. You could even livestream your own hot dog eating contest – whatever tickles your pickle.

  • Buzzcut, mohawk or mullet – chop your locks for CALM

Do something bald and brave the shave, dye your hair in CALM colours, or turn heads with a weird and wonderful hairdo. Whether you’ve always wanted to give Bob Ross’s famous perm a go, or you fancy knitting a jumper from your own hair, get creative with your lid.

There’s also something quite liberating about doing something different with your hair. Whatever you do with your ‘do is up to you.

  • Give a Guinness World Record a go

There’s nothing like a bit of healthy competition to get you motivated and let’s face it, it’s something we all lack this time of year. Maybe you’re ready to beat the record for the most spoons balanced on a human body, or perhaps you think you’ve got what it takes to outdo the pinky pull-ups record – there’s a whole load of eccentric inspiration out there. Our only request? Share your efforts with us so that we can give you a shout out.

  • Organise a pub quiz or games tournament

Virtual pub quizzes are so 2020, but they’re a great way to stay connected with your mates when everyone wants to hibernate. Make things more fun by asking your friends to guess the age of celebrities, identify close-ups of cheese, or hum a tune for people to name.

Tiddlywinks tournaments your bag? Or maybe Cards Against Humanity is more your thing? If there’s a game you’re into, why not take on your mates for a charity championship.

  • Rave or disco against living miserably

Get moving for some moolah! It’s tempting to stay glued to the sofa when the weather is miserable, but getting active can help you to feel more positive and less tired.

Throw some shapes and conquer a 24 hour rave with your friends, have a virtual dance off, or host a disco in your garage. Dancing (no matter how many left feet you have) can make you feel amazing, so why not lunge to raise some funds.

However you’re planning to #StickItToWinter, register what you’re doing here and don’t forget to share photos of your challenges so that we can cheer you on. Don’t fancy thinking up your own fundraiser? Head to our events page for other ways to get involved.

If you’re finding winter tough, CALM is here, no matter what. Our helpline and webchat services are free, confidential and open every day from 5pm until midnight. Head here to find support.