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When the winter comes

Winter in Germany is a season full of traditions. This season also means a dramatic change in the weather. Without warning, the sky starts to turn gray and as the hours pass, darkness comes earlier than usual. Freezing wind, rain, and low temperatures become part of our daily routine, unlike the sunny days that seem to be fewer and fewer. The combination of cold and gray skies makes the days longer. It gets dark very early, and the morning rises a little late. The first few days of this season usually feel the heaviest, but suddenly we noticed that we are getting adjusted to it. However, this drastic change can affect our daily life, mood, and even our studying routines.

View of Munich in winter

My first winter

All these changes are often even tougher the first winter we are away from home. I remember my first winter here. I heard about „winter depression“ a lot. It was a completely unknown concept to me. As I come from a country where the sun shines every day of the year.  So, winter is just rain and the temperatures never get less than 10 degrees Celsius. But when winter started here my first year, I realized all the changes it brings with it and how the few hours of daylight affect many aspects of our life. So, I was afraid that my winter would become depressing.
Especially because sometimes during this season is when we get the most nostalgic and tend to miss home even more.
Picture of my first winter


That’s why I decided to write about this topic to show you some tips that have helped me turn winters into a time that is not so hard to handle.

Spending time with friends:

Even if it’s sometimes too cold to go outside, there are lots of fun activities you can do with a group of friends at home: like cooking or watching movies. But one of my favorite activities to do with friends is to play board games. In Germany, there are many typical board games besides the well-known ones. 

Build a routine:

This is an excellent tip, especially if you struggle to keep your energy up when it gets dark early. In this way, you can order your activities better throughout the day. It will not only help you to beat the winter blues but also to be more productive.

I recommend you: order your activities by hours in a calendar or a planner. Sometimes even in your phone notes. It will help you notice when you have more energy. So you can concentrate and plan your day better.

Move or take the mornings for a walk:

Since there are not many hours of daylight, I recommend you take advantage of them by walking or exercising. Even if you only spend 5 minutes on your balcony or look through the window in the mornings. It will help you to start the day in a better mood.

Call your relatives or write to them as often as you feel necessary:

Both the season and winter tend to make us miss home more than usual. Sometimes talking for at least five minutes with your loved ones can fill you with energy and make you feel close to them. 

Just because it’s winter and dark outside doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy this season. Just like in summer, there are plenty of activities you can do alone or with friends. It may not be the best idea to have a picnic in the park, but you can still learn about the culture, especially in December when the streets are full of decorations and lights.

Eventually, you may even find winter better than summer. But even if winter might not be your favorite season, you can still create fantastic memories in these months.

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Really proud of Germany

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