99 ways to SMASH the January Blues

We've got 99 problems but the January Blues ain't one.

Get it done postits

January's a bastard of a month. Bloated, lethargic, poor, boring, cold, wet... perfect adjectives for this altogether pathetic time period. It's been tempting to bumble through - eyes to the pavement, fast food in hand, iPod firmly in, we've braced ourselves against the arctic winds and piles of revision the best way we know how - trudging through half asleep in a lonely, sad stupor.

But you know what, January? There's one week left of you and we're not going to stand here and take it anymore. This is the start of the rest of our LIVES! We're getting proactive and we're getting happy. NOW.


1. Don't panic

January is prime time for an existential crisis, with exams looming and Christmas a distant memory. Start by remembering one thing: you have tons of time to achieve your potential, you've just got to start somewhere.

2. Get up to date with uni work

Do the extra reading. Finish those essay edits. Go the extra mile with revision. Whatever you've still got hanging over you, make it your priority to finish it - you will feel SO much better afterwards, we guarantee.

3. Remember there is always hope

Seriously. We're just gonna leave these pictures of Robert Pattinson in a ridiculous Japanese underwear advert here...

4. Get cooking

Tackle the midweek slump with these microwave mug recipes, perfect a mind-boggling upside down recipe or pimp your favourite chocolate bar into a full-blown dessert.

5. Take regular breaks

Yes, it's great to have your nose back to the grindstone and all that, but be sure to take regular breaks. Carve out an hour each day for an 'educational' Netflix show, or to do something fun with your uni friends.


6. Go to bed earlier

You're procrastinating before bed, we know it. Don't think you are? Take our test. If you identify with more than a couple of these, you're definitely staying up too late.

7. Plan this year's adventure

A quick city break, long weekend in the UK or months travelling further afield - whatever your budget, follow our cheap travel tips and get booking the trip of a lifetime.

8. Learn how to ask for a condom in 15 languages

You never know what might happen on that trip...

9. Get excited about 2015

There's TONS of awesome stuff to look forward to in 2015, like the final Hunger Games film, a new Royal Baby (come on, we know you're already picking out names) and a new series of Game of Thrones.

10. Go out and use one of 69 chat up lines guaranteed to work

Go on, try 'em. If it doesn't work, it's bound to put a smile on your (and their) face. And if it does, well...

11. Lose the winter weight

Getting rid of winter weight (yep, we're still carrying some from Christmas, don't judge) can actually be fun - if you know how to do it right. Grab some buddies, establish a routine and get moving.

12. With the help of super-healthy desserts

Who said tasty had to be bad for you? Sweet potato brownies, peanut butter eggs, muesli parfait... these healthy dessert recipes will help you on the road to beach bod quicker than you can say power smoothie.

13. And deliciously good-for-you dinners

Two weeks of these healthy (and cheap!) recipes are guaranteed to make you feel better. Try it or your money back!*

*We don't actually have any money for you, sorry.

14. Make a packed lunch

Save time, money and gain more control over what you're eating with these easy packed lunch ideas.

15. Read an amazing book

We've rounded up ALL the best books of 2014 to get you started, from Amy Poehler's ball-busting 'Yes Please' to cool, compelling work of fiction 'We Were Liars' by E. Lockhart.


16. Plan the ultimate housemate night in

Round 'em up, get some food in, download an awesome movie in advance and put someone on hot chocolate duty - with our help this housemate night in will be one to remember.

17. Do some body maintenance

Did you know you can make loads of natural (and crucially, cheap) beauty products with ingredients from your kitchen cupboard? Now you do.

18. Reminisce

Everyone loves a bit of nostalgia. Take a trip down memory lane and remember all your favourite childhood foods (that you probably wouldn't eat now) then all the kids TV shows you REALLY wanted to go on. Ah, those were the days.

19. Remember that Taylor Swift exists

When the chips are down, it's worth remembering all the reasons Taylor Swift will eventually rule the world and why you're totally OK with that. The brilliant 25 year-old even paid off a student's tuition fees the other day, so under her rule, there's hope for you yet.

20. Plan an Easter getaway in Europe

Get something really cool in the diary and whenever you're feeling down, start planning which awesome bars you'll go to, shops you'll visit and sights you want to see. Instant uplift.


21. Volunteer for a summer festival

Free tickets to awesome festivals, check. Doing your bit for charity, check. Something to look forward to in summer, check. Absolutely NO money spent on the above, CHECK. Now's the time to sign up for summer fun - check out Oxfam and ActionAid to get started.

22. Make a hot toddy

Study our list of hot, alcoholic bevvies then make each and every one. You know, for research purposes.

23. Mix sweets and booze

While we're at it with the alcohol, why not learn how to turn your favourite gummy sweets into boozy treats? Easy when you know how.

24. Conduct a digi-detox

You've cut down on pastries, upped your veg intake and even skipped dessert this week - but what about your mental health? Start a digital detox and give your brain a break.

25. Visit mates at other unis

When your exams are over and coursework's all done, head off on a trip to a friend's uni. Old pals + new city to explore = happy happy happy. Here's our pick of the best student cities for a night out.

26. Learn to love your uni bedroom

A month back home making you resent your crappy uni digs? Use our space-saving ideas for people with tiny bedrooms, copy these awesome decorating hacks and learn how to spice up your flat without causing any damage.

27. Make your bed a haven from all that is evil in the world

Thought your bed was as comfy as it could get? Follow these steps to making it cosy and you might never get out again.

28. Enjoy some alone time

There are some things EVERYONE does when their flatmates are away. Next time you find yourself alone, don't get depressed, revel in the freedom! Preferably naked.

29. Set out the goalposts

Go further than you thought you ever could with a set list of goals to achieve this year at uni.

30. Learn how to get ready in five minutes

Always running late? These five minute beauty hacks will take care of your appearance when you don't have time to.


31. Get fit

Here's some exercises to help you do it without leaving the house.

32. Stop being late

You CAN beat the clock. Never have to give a crap excuse again with this fool-proof list of ways to stop being late.

33. And stop worrying

There's no point walking through life with an umbrella up, waiting for it to rain. There are some things in life only worry warts will understand, but if you're feeling anxious, follow our guide to controlling panic attacks and getting the help you need.

34. Nail some easy midweek meals

Get to Wednesday and find yourself wandering around the reduced aisle, at a loss for what to cook? These easy midweek meal recipes will see you through to Spring, no problem.

35. Cherish your best friend

Single? There are tons of reasons it can be better to have a best friend than a partner. Call 'em up and tell 'em you love 'em.


36. But don't forget your partner

Taken? Lucky you - but if you've gone back to uni in a long distance relationship, take extra steps to make it work and be prepared for difficulties - distance can challenge the strongest of couples but compromise and a little effort will go a long way!

37. Learn how to make vegetables taste amazing

It can (and should) be done. And here's how.

38. Get naked

Seriously, there are many reasons being naked will improve your life. Do it as often as you can - it's liberating.

39. Save some cash

Need dollar and need it now? This fail-safe student guide to saving money will sort you right out. Start with dropping your coffee habit. It's bankrupting you!

40. Perfect some nail art

Master how to draw Woody, Buzz and the rest of the Toy Story gang on your fingers (perfect for a fancy dress party) or NAIL (sorry) that Frozen nail art design before you get too old for it to be cool.


41. Get excited for Toy Story 4

Oh yeah, and if you're still feeling blue at this point, it's worth remembering that TOY STORY 4 IS IN THE PIPLEINE. It's not out until 2017, but until then you can get excited dreaming up which new toys might make the cast, from Hungry Hippos to Polly Pocket.

42. Spring clean early

Who says you have to wait until Spring to get cleaning? If you came back to uni with the best intentions for a tidy room but life got in the way, decide that NOW is the moment you'll throw away those old magazines, fold your jumpers and hoover. Feels good, huh?

43\ ....whilst simultaneously making money selling your unwanted old crap

There are MUCH worse ways to make money at uni than clearing out and selling your old shiz. We all knowcash for crap cheers a soul up, so get on eBay or hold a jumble sale.

44. Consider working abroad

If you're uninspired by your surroundings, why not plan some time working abroad? It's easy for students to do, broadens your horizons and seriously ups your job prospects. Plus, it'll more than likely be sunnier than the UK...

45. Do some volunteering

It's proven that doing something good for someone else makes you feel better. FACT. Ahem, it's good for your CV too..

46. Swear off clubbing for a while

Seriously, we asked, and a LOT of you actually hate clubbing. Do yourself a favour and stay away from the dancefloor for a couple of weeks - it could do you (and your wallet) the world of good.

47. Reconnect with childhood pals

There are some things only old friends can understand. Poke them on Facebook, ask your mum where they're living now... just get in touch. It'll make your (and probably their!) day.

48. Chat to your cat (everyone does it)

It's therapeutic, promise. If your cat's all the way back home, Skype works too (but stroking them through the screen is slightly less satisfying, we'll admit).

49. Exercise with a friend

Find it difficult to motivate yourself in the gym, or even to put your trainers on and get running? Agree to do it with a friend, set some goals and get started - you'll be amazed at what you achieve with a little support (and healthy rivalry).

50. Get your career on track

Careers counselling, internships, workshops - all the resources for getting your career on track whilst at uni are there for the taking - for free. Get involved while you still can!


51. Catch up on great TV

New series of some of the best TV on earth will hit our screens this year - Orange Is The New Black, Peep Show, Game Of Thrones, Parks & Rec, Sherlock and Breaking Bad spin-off Better Call Saul to name a few. Get your bum on that sofa and get up to speed before the latest instalment hits our screens (hopefully recovering after a 5k run, as per no. 49).

52. Write a checklist

If you're graduating in 2015, there are a few things you need to do first, from kissing the person you always fancies to pranking your housemates. Follow this checklist and you'll graduate feeling more accomplished than you'd dreamed of.

53. Visit an independent bookshop

They're a dying breed and it's a crying shame. Support local, independent bookshops and go exploring - it'll make you feel fuzzy inside.

54. Or a board game cafe

Taking dry January seriously? Board game cafes are havens for tee totallers (though they often serve booze too). Guess Who, anyone?

55. Try a weird new food combination

Cornflakes and chicken shouldn't work, but my god, it does. Try these incredibly edible food combos and you won't look back.


56. Curb your anxiety

We've put together a guide to dealing with anxiety, but if you're really struggling, be sure to visit your GP.

57. Plan the perfect date

An awesome date doesn't have to cost the earth. If you're in London, give these cheap date ideas a whirl.

58. Stock up on cheap cupboard essentials

With these in the kitchen, you can make a meal out of ANYTHING.

59. Book a summer holiday with your best friend

Seeing the world with your very best friend is the best thing you can do in life, whether it's a week in the sun or a longer trip. Take the plunge with your BFF and you'll have awesome memories for life.


You've been doing it all wrong, you see. Here's how to have great sex in 2015, starting now.


61. Push for those repairs on your flat

Landlords HAVE to stop taking advantage of students. If your student accommodation or rented housing needs work, demand it.

62. Hold your own Come Dine With Me

A cheap way to provide hours of amusement, banter and a bunch of extremely pleasant evenings (because you don't have to do it with strangers) - do your own Come Dine With Me.

63. Slash your energy bill

From overfilling the kettle to using the oven too much, there are tons of little things you're doing that add up to a LARGE bill. Learn how to stop doing 'em with our guide to slashing your energy bills.

64. Furnish your uni house for FREE

Yep, you can pick up everything from tables an chairs to posters for absolutely nada.

65. Drink more water

You'll sleep better, think clearer, look nicer and feel happier. Win win.


66. Trick yourself into sleeping better

Can't sleep, won't sleep? Try these tricks to help you drop off.

67. Forgive someone

Holding a grudge is like letting someone live rent-free inside your head. As Elsa would say, Let. It. Go.

68. Join a new society

Now you've realised you probably won't attend that knitting spin class at 9pm on a Tuesday, you can clear your schedule efor awesome societies you'll really enjoy. Read about the Top 20 amazingly weird university societies to whet your appetite.

69. Have an 'old school' video games night

Mario Kart, Zelda, Spyro, Donkey Kong... we just *know* you've got a N64 or PS1 lying around somewhere...

70. Stop reading women's magazines

For a whole month. Try it - we guarantee you'll feel better about yourself, save cash and free up some time to read a classic book instead.

71. Ring your parents

Once a week, even if it's for a five minute catch up - it'll put your feet back on the ground and make you feel happier, guaranteed.

72. Discover how good the Harry Potter characters would be in bed

Luna definitely knows how to Lovegood...

73. Start thinking about a gift for Mother's Day

Why not give Mother's Day more than 2 minutes' thought this year? Start working on a photo album full of family pics, a poem, saving up for a special present or planning a nice lunch out somewhere. It'll make you feel good to be organised and mum will be delighted you didn't opt for petrol shop flowers and a crappy card AGAIN...

74. Partake in hydrotherapy

Also known as a very, VERY long hot shower or bath. Maybe make sure your housemates have left for lectures first...

75. Apologise to someone

Know you did bad, but can't bring yourself to say it? Take the plunge. They'll respect you for it and a weight will be lifted.


76. Nip that cold in the bud

Got the sniffles? You'll be raring to go by Friday if you follow these quick ways to cure a cold.

77. Get crafty

Follow our guide to keeping busy with crafts when it's cold outside - it's fun!

78. Cheer yourself up with some GIFs

Here's a round up of the best GIFs from 2014. We're good to you, huh.

79. Download these apps before a trip to London

Living in London or heading there at some point this year? Make life infinitely easier with these awesome apps.

80. Eat more cheese

Because we can think of a few reasons cheese might be your soulmate, and how will you know if you don't try it?


81. Accept that real life sex is not like movie sex

Here's why.

82. Learn some fun Disney facts

Did you know Prince Philip in Sleeping Beauty is named after the UK's very own Prince philip? You do now - and here's a bunch of other facts that'll make you reassess your childhood...

83. Remember everyone does embarrassing things

There are some cringeworthy things that everyone does, but years down the line no one will remember - except your siblings, of course.

84. Be more body positive

There are plenty of ways to be more body positive - make sure you start doing them today.

85. Try to say these words out loud without giggling

Oh wait, you can't. 'Cos they're hilarious. MOIST.

86. Breathe

Deep. Slow. Ahhhhh. That's better.

87. Become a pro at eBay

There are some tricks eBay pros do not want you to know. Luckily, we're pretty damn good, so we'll give you a hand.

88. Give your hair some TLC

Try one of these DIY miracle hair treatments - they cost pennies.

89. Find a secret study spot

Find it hard to concentrate? Spend a few moments seeking out a quiet study spot, be it in the local library (NOT uni!), a nice cafe or even your kitchen in the three hour window on a Tuesday when all your flatmates have lectures. Turn your phone off and enjoy.

90. Improve your health

Follow these quick fixes and you'll look and feel better in days, promise.



92. Clear out your wardrobe

Are you a self-confessed hoarder? Time to ditch all those clothes you aren't wearing and books you ain't reading. If you haven't used it in 6 months, bin it.

93. Ban bad-for-you breakfasts

Start the day with energy-boosting nutrients (boiled eggs, porridge and fruit = good, sugary cereal = BAD) instead of empty calories - it'll do you the world of good. Also, perfect these healthy 4-ingredient hangover breakfasts to kill that headache.

94. Throw a party

We've got juuuust a few party themes up our sleeves, too...

95. Be a tourist in your own town

Hop on the bus, put your walking boots on or nab a lift with a friend to a local landmark. Explore your uni city's museums, look around the local market and check out the cafes and bakeries near your house. You're bound to discover a local gem!


96. Turn your phone off

For a whole day. We challenge you...

97. Make a playlist

Take the time to put together a playlist of songs that make you instantly happy, then whack it on whenever you're feeling down.

98. Remember that there is NO ONE else on earth like you.

And that's a friggin' awesome thing.

99. And If all else fails? Wallow in your misery

Annie Mac can help. Every Sunday night from 11pm, the Radio 1 presenter brings us the Musical Hot Water Bottle, encouraging listeners to put on comfy clothes, grab some comfort food and settle in for two hours of Sunday-night-fear-soothing tunes.

Forget your I-still-can't-believe-I-actually-did-that-last-night stresses, your existential crises - whatever your woe, Annie has a cathartic song up her sleeve to make you feel better (or worse, for exactly 2 minutes and 32 seconds).

When you're done, and you've made it through the show's sometimes sad, sometimes moving, but always incredible playlist, it's time to pep up and move into Monday with pride. Enjoy!

Feature: Cotewrites.com