As much as I love cozy autumnal vibes, it would be niave to ignore the reality that the weather is getting colder, the nights are getting longer and with this come the inevitable winter blues…
Between Septepmber and Octobwwe there is an increase in people feeling blue and generally feeling that life has become more difficult. For some people this is the winter blues, for others they suffer with Seasonal Affective Disorder. Treatments for SAD are very similar to those for OCD, with the most affective being Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), along with a number of simple lifestyle choices. Some people fnid they need additional support or medication. Unfortunately, there isn’t a one size, fits all approach.
It’s important to remember that everyone is affected differently and so what works for one person, may not work for another. Mix and match the below tips and let me know what works for you in the comments…
𖤐 Connect with friends & family: Socialising is good for your mental health and so during these darker months, make an extra effort to keep in touch with the people you care about. Try and accept their invitations to outings, even if you only stay for a short while, it may be just think you need to lift your spirits.
𖤐 Start a new hobby: Hobbies provide many benefits including an opportunity to keep your mind active.
Here are some examples of hobbies you can try:
It’s important to have something to focus on & look forward to, so why not give something a try!
𖤐 Talk about how you’re feeling: Therapies such as counselling, psychotherapy and CBT have proven beneficial to help some individuals manage their symptoms of SAD. You can also talk to friends and family.
𖤐 Adopt a healthy diet: Eating a healthy diet has a plethora of benefits. A healthy diet will boost your mood, give you additional energy and help you not put on weight over the winter months. Try and balance your cravings for cards (such as potoes/pasta), which fresh fruit and vegetables… Nuts are also mood lifters.
𖤐 Use a SAD Lamp: Some people find that light therapy is affective for seasonal depression. You can practice light therapy at home by sitting in front of a SAD lmp for 30minutes per day. Light boxes are sadly not available on the NHS, however these lamps give light 10x stronger that ordinary home and office lighting.
𖤐 Get active: A daily walk during the middle of the day will not only top up your vitamin D, but exercise also has many other benefits for both your physical and mental health and wellbeing.
𖤐 Get outside: Natural daylight is really important for lifting your mood. Try and get outside during the bright days and if you’re at home, open the curtains to allow sunlight in and sit near the window.
𖤐 Keep warm: studies show that being cold makes you feel more depressed so staying warm can reduce and eliviate your winter blues, try keeping warm by layering clothes and with hot food and drinks.
𖤐 Join a support group or online forum: Some people find it beneficial to talk about their thoughts and feelings, esepecially with others who have experienced them as it reminds them that they’re not alone.
𖤐 Seek professional help: If your symptoms are affecting your daily life and living, please contact your GP for additional support… Here’s your reminder: It’s okay to ask for help and your thoughts are valid.
Do you have any additional tips for elivating the sympoms of SAD?
I’d love for you to share them in the comments below.