No More Winter Blues!
It seems to be called ‘SAD’s for a reason. As the leaves fall from the trees and the central heating receives its yearly boost, the chilly weather is met with divisive feelings;
For some, the colder days bring excitement of silly season. whereas others are greeted with daily dread as they know that another long season of Seasonal Affective Disorder awaits.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a kind of depression that’s related to changes in seasons. Usually starting in Autumn and continuing through Winter, common symptoms include feeling depressed, sluggish or ‘flat’ in mood, losing interest in activities, experiencing low energy, changes in appetite and having difficulty concentrating.
It’s only natural to want to ‘hibernate’ a little bit more in Winter to survive the cold, but it becomes a problem when it starts to affect the quality of our daily life.
We’ve handwritten 7 effective ways to cope with Seasonal Affective Disorder:
Nature & Daylight
We know the days are shorter and the nights are longer, but there is still a window of opportunity between the darkness to avail of beautiful daylight each day. Taking a gentle walk in nature will provide your daily dose of Vitamin D, uplift your spirits and increase cortisol – responsible for telling your body “It’s a new day, time to get up so that we can sleep better this evening!”
As the sun is our main source of Vitamin D, it makes sense that we can become deficient during Winter. Taking a Vitamin D supplement is an excellent way to combat the lack of sunshine received during darker days. Doing so will boost the immune system, fight off bugs and keep us feeling our best. You can buy Vitamin D here.
Light Therapy is an efficient way to combat SAD’s in the comfort of your own home. Traditionally, you sit or work near a ‘light therapy box’ which mimics natural daylight. This is essential for functions like a restful sleep at night and an increase in mood. They are available to buy on Irish website brighterday.ie with cheaper options available on Amazon.
Counselling & Psychotherapy
Psychotherapists are uniquely trained to understand the connection between the mind and body. They can offer strategies to help you cope with the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder and allow you to identify problem areas and then develop an action plan towards a happier, healthier you. Talking to a professional when experiencing depressive symptoms is an extremely effective way of dealing with hardship and seeing the world in a brighter way.
A Healthy Diet
Our eating habits play a massive role in our feelings and emotions. Craving additional energy from quick-hit sugary foods is only natural during Winter, but healthy foods that contain slow releasing energy provide us with a steady flow that lasts throughout the day rather than peaks and crashes. Take this opportunity to get creative in the kitchen – think warm, hearty stews and curries. If you’re not sure how to eat correctly, booking a consultation with a Nutritional Therapist will allow you to make smarter food and lifestyle choices which can help you manage ‘SAD’s.
Our bodies are evidently linked with the seasonal changes around us – and even if we can’t change the weather, we can balance our internal systems through Acupuncture. This ancient technique has the ability to increase our supply of melatonin and other hormones which ensure the natural rhythm of our bodies are up to scratch. Traditional Chinese Medicine has been around for thousands of years. They are highly equipped and qualified to treat a broad spectrum of energy issues and mood disorders.
Listen To Your Body
While we try to maintain a balanced lifestyle, we all have in-built wisdom that teaches us to cope throughout the Winter. It asks us to rest more – not sleep all day, eat better – not fill it with junk, wrap up in the comfort of hugs – not isolate ourselves from friends and family. Learning to be kind to ourselves and knowing that this isn’t ‘our fault’ is the first step we can take towards a healthy and happy life – all year long
For guidance on the therapies available to help you cope with Seasonal Affective Disorder, get in touch at email@example.com.
We would be happy to help.