Seasonal Affective Disorder, or better known, seasonal depression hits hard. Around the time it starts to get cold, all of my progress I’ve made through the year feels like it has gone out the window, into a dirty snow bank, to die. Dramatic, right? I know… I’m good at that.
But seriously! It’s the most wonderful time of the year my
ass. Winter sucks, and the worst part is that it’s not even over after Christmas,
or for like four more months after that! And once January hits, oh then the
worst is yet to come. The snow is dirty, slush covers the ground, and
everything is grey, including my mood. Winter seems like an empty wasteland and
brings out the worst in my depression. Every added centimeter of snow feels
like another pound on my shoulders and oh but the blankets are so warm why not
stay here all day? It’s sad and cold and gross out there anyway.
Sound familiar? If it does, you may have seasonal affective disorder. (Go see a doctor, seriously, I am not one)
According to trusty Google, seasonal affective disorder is: depression
associated with late autumn and winter and thought to be caused by a lack of
The sun rises at 8:00 a.m. and sets at 5:00 p.m. If you are oh so lucky, you might see the sun at some point during your work day, but probably not. Isn’t that depressing? It is, but there are still things you can do to alleviate the heaviness. Here are a few things I’ve implemented this year to feel a little less crappy.
- Stay hydrated
The winter is dry and rough and can flare up dry skin, chapped lips and eczema. For me, it’s eczema. This spikes my depression 10-fold. To curb this, I try to stay hydrated, with copious amounts of water and hydrating lotion constantly. Keep some in your purse, in your desk, in your car, because nothing is worse than smiling for the first time in days, and cracking your lip.
- Make goals for the spring
Something that helps me is to use the winter as a time to grind for what I want in the spring. Do I want to lose some weight, winter is the time to do it, because there is nothing else to do other than dwell in the fact that winter sucks. Winter is a time I try to up my productivity because being productive and working on goals makes me feel better about myself in a time that it’s all too familiar to feel shitty about myself.
- Get some fresh air
I know, it’s cold out there. We live in a place that the air hurts our face. But get out there anyway. Fresh air is so good for seasonal depression, especially on those rare occasions when the sun is shining. Get out in that air that hurts your face, trust me, it will make you feel so much better.
- Listen to some fast-paced music
Listen, I GET THE COZY VIBES. Bon Iver and city and colour are my faves, but on a day that you are already feeling low energy, a song that is slow and somber might lower your energy even more. Right now, to pump myself up I’ve been listening to Qveen Herby, she always manages to bring out my inner bad bitch. Turn it up and jam out.
- Go out
That’s right, crawl out of that comfort cocoon and go out to eat or dancing or for a couple drinks with friends. Socializing in a public setting, even if it’s just with your significant other that you see every day, can make you feel like a person again. Find a place with a nice atmosphere, and drink in the energy of people that don’t feel as shitty as you.
- Try to enjoy the winter, instead of just waiting
for it to pass
Why did you love the snow as a child? I remember spending hours upon hours outside by myself just playing in the snow. I loved everything about winter; how pretty it was, how quiet it was, how fun the snow was to play in. When was the last time you went sledding? Find some friends, get out in the snow and have fun again! The best part of being a grown up and having winter fun is grown up beverages can be involved. Enjoy the snow again.
- Remember, the winter can only last so long
In my kitchen I have a chalkboard with the quote, “No matter how long the Winter, Spring is sure to follow”. This is clearly a metaphor for going through tough times in life, but I take it very literal as well. Even though it feels like every day for the rest of your life is going to be blanketed in snow, soon enough the sun will shine again.