Handling Winter in NYC

Monica Greene

New York City is a place full of seasonal challenges. In the summer, New Yorkers deal with sweltering temperatures and the horrible smell of hot garbage. Rainy springs can make getting around miserable, and New York autumns seem to delight in changing the temperature so that you’re always wearing something that’s either too hot or too cold. The most challenging season of all, though, is winter. That’s when New York fills up with filthy snow and holiday tourists. It’s when things get cold and miserable and when the sun sets early. If you’re not careful, winter in New York City can be a terrible experience.

But don’t worry, because you’re about to get some valuable advice on handling your next New York City winter. Here’s what you need to know!

Get A Therapist

Therapy is a valuable form of mental health care that can help just about anyone, from the profoundly depressed to the mildly stressed-out. Getting yourself to therapy is a good idea all year long, explain the experts at Therapy Group of NYC. When winter rolls around, therapy only grows more important.

That’s because places like New York City are hotbeds for a chilly form of mental health issue: seasonal affective disorder. When cold weather keeps people indoors and early sunsets drain the days of sunshine, that can wreak havoc on a person’s mental health. 

That’s why seasonal affective disorder, also known as seasonal depression, is something that every New Yorker should be on the lookout for. There are lots of ways to fight seasonal mental health stresses, but the best tactic is the same one that experts recommend year-round: Go to therapy!

Stay Warm

New York City isn’t in Alaska, but it can get pretty darn cold around here. Make sure that you’re staying warm! Seasonal HVAC maintenance is a must in order to avoid seasonal HVAC problems. If you live in a rented home, check your heating system and make sure that your landlord turns it on in a timely manner (or that you can control it yourself).

If you feel that you’re being frozen out of your own home, contact your landlord and then, if necessary, turn to a tenant’s rights organization for more help.

Get Outside

The chilly weather may cause you to stay indoors more often than you otherwise would. That’s okay, but don’t let things get out of hand! Spending a whole winter in your apartment is a good way to end up feeling depressed and miserable. Make a point of getting out of the house from time to time. Get a little fresh and exercise by walking somewhere nearby, or hop in a cab to beat the cold commute while still exploring a new part of the city. 

There are plenty of warm places to hang out in the New York City winters, including restaurants, concert halls, and museums. Plus, many of New York’s best attractions are less crowded in winter, particularly after the holiday tourism dies down.

Help Others

When most people talk about surviving a New York City winter, they’re not speaking literally. Unfortunately, though, the winters here in New York City really can be lethal to some people. Not everyone has a warm winter coat to put on or a cozy apartment to return home to. Some people struggle daily to stay warm and find a safe place to sleep. Some people lack homes, food, and basic human comforts.

You may not always feel lucky in the New York City winter, but if you’re lucky enough to have a home, then you’re luckier than some. Why not give something back? Donating warm clothes and volunteering to help homeless shelters and food banks are wonderful things to do. They’re great ways to cheer yourself up and help others at the same time.

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