Winters are all about getting cozy, hot coffee and layers of warm clothing. The colors around are so peaceful and calming but for many there lies this gloom. We generally see a hike in seasonal depression at this time of the year. Surprisingly, seasonal affective disorder is estimated to affect 10 million Americans and it is four times more common in women than in men. Let’s deal with a seasonal depressive disorder like a boss this year with these self-help tips and mindset.
Let’s understand what exactly is seasonal affective disorder (SAD) – It is a common mood disorder that might be characterized by things like feeling less energetic, having sleep problems or sleeping too much, difficulty in concentrating, social withdrawal, feeling low and gloomy for longer periods than usual.
If you are going through a mental health issue already, this season might be a difficult period. Remember just like all the other seasons, this too shall pass. This SADness around might get difficult to get out of (Like getting out of the comforter on a winter morning, it is a struggle) but we are here to help.
Dealing With SAD?
Psychologists are still trying to answer what exactly causes this but there are some factors we can take into consideration:
The Winter’s Sun
Yes, Winter’s sun is a blessing. The human body has a biological clock that determines what your body should do according to the light and temperature around it a.k.a circadian rhythm. This cycle gets off track due to changes in sunlight and temperature. Ever heard of sunlight lamps? These can be really helpful as they mimic sunlight and help you sleep.
Again due to a lower temperature and less sunlight, just like other animals, your hibernation mode gets switched on. The happy hormone (Serotonin) and the Sleep hormone (Melatonin) naturally gets affected. You might feel more sleepy and lazy these days. There are many simple tools in Wysa that help you feel active and kicking. Do check them out 😉
Now that we know, what else can we do?
“Winter is a season of recovery and preparation”– Paul Theroux
Maybe that’s why we are blessed with festivals at this time of the year. Festivals can be a great reason to get out, meet old friends and family, share feelings, listen to stories, talk to strangers.
Hug people, shop your heart out and host parties. This is a season to check up on your neighbors, talk to your friends, and share food with people. Make it a December to remember.
Let’s try looking at the silver lining of SAD
Because of the holiday season, you might have a lot of time, you can use this time to perhaps learn something new, build a nice fire, cozy up next to it. Movie marathons and game nights are a few more ideas to make it a happy winter.
At the end of the day, you might still want to stay in bed, lie down in the darkness, and not switch on the light. It’s okay.
It’s okay to feel this way but remember –
“Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.”–Albus Dumbledore
It takes a lot of courage and strength to get this SADness out of your system, tell someone how you are feeling and be accepted for it. It’s okay to vent it out, show your emotions and get vulnerable. We are with you on this journey to better mental health. You can always talk to Wysa and all the experts available on the app. Let’s heal together and spread the warmth. After all, it’s cold out there. And also there are many older people who suffer from SAD, so don’t forget to help them out and spread a little more love and happiness.