Beating the Winter Blues: 10 Tips for Combating Seasonal Depression
Fall is officially here, and you know what that means: warm sweaters, falling leaves, and of course everything pumpkin spice! But, fall also means a change in our daily weather and sunlight. The days are getting shorter, and we are getting less and less daylight. Soon, we will be heading to work in the dark, and dropping the kids off at school just as the sky is cracking its first few bleak rays of light. We return home in the dark, feeling tired and drained, and still have to muster up the energy to cook a dinner, do the chores, get the kids ready for bed, and have a little downtime. That spring in our step that we had during the summer months? It has officially left the building.
Don’t get me wrong, I actually love the fall; I love the beautiful colours and crisp, sunny days, and I love all things pumpkin spice. But, I do notice how the change in season and the decrease in natural sunlight affects me, and can sometimes increase my feelings of depression and anxiety. People often feel sluggish and slow, their energy almost non-existent, as their bodies and minds adjust to less sunlight and a more dormant existence, preparing for the darkness and cold of winter. However, for some, this time of year brings about more than just sluggishness; for some, this time of year can cause bouts of seasonal depression.
It is important to be aware of your mental state during this time of year, and monitor for any significant changes or increases in depression, taking steps to incorporate a little extra self-care to help yourself through these dark months. Here are 10 simple self-care tips you can incorporate into your daily routine to beat the winter blues.
- Stay active!
You might feel like a grizzly bear and just want to curl up in a den and not move until spring. But, the best way to combat feelings of sluggishness is to stay active. Even if it’s just to get out for a brisk walk around the block, you will feel so energized once you return home.
- Get outdoors.
Soak up as much sunlight as possible by getting outdoors as much as you can during the day. Go for a walk on your lunch break, do some outdoor chores when you get home, grab the family and go for a bike ride after dinner.
- Begin a CBD regime.
CBD oil is known for its calming effects and its ability to decrease feelings of depression and anxiety. If you find that you are affected by the changing seasons and shorter days, then start your day with Verima’s organic, high-quality CBD tincture to combat any feelings of depression you may experience. Make sure you also tuck Verima’s acupressure rollerball in your purse, for a quick, portable way to battle those blues throughout the day.
Use Verima’s acupressure rollerball to ease away tension throughout the day.
- Eat healthy
Many people tend to crave comfort foods this time of year – thick soups, creamy stews, and lots of comforting carbs! While no one is suggesting eliminating those items (because we all know how wonderful they are!), be sure to also include healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. By eating well and fueling our bodies with nourishing foods, we feel healthier and therefore happier and more energized.
- Add aromatherapy.
Essential oils are known to influence the area in the brain that controls our moods, and certain oils such as citrus or lavender can have calming and uplifting effects on people. Citrus is an energizing scent to use first thing in the morning and throughout the day, whereas lavender is a calming scent that is great to use at bedtime to help you settle off to sleep.
Verima’s Citrus Trio Lotion is a wonderful way to start your day, with its natural blend of white and red grapefruit, orange, and a touch of cedar.
- Increase your vitamins.
This is a good time of year to make sure you’re on a high-quality multi-vitamin, and it is also beneficial to take vitamin C and vitamin D supplements. We get a lot of vitamin D from the sun, and when the days start to shorten, our exposure to this important vitamin decreases.
- Stick to a schedule.
Sometimes, when we are feeling tired and depressed, it can be easy to fall out of our daily routine because our sleep patterns are thrown off; we are up more at night and have a harder time waking up in the morning. By sticking to a schedule, your body will become accustomed to sleep and wake times, which in turn will help to combat feelings of depression.
- Take a vacation.
If the sun doesn’t come to you, you might have to seek out the sun! Take a vacation from the winter days and visit somewhere tropical. A vacation is something to look forward to, keeping you in a positive mindset, and the thrill of the vacation and the memories you make will last long after you return.
Treat yourself to some sunshine by taking a vacation during the winter months: Photo via Pixabay
- Keep busy.
Add a few fun activities into your schedule throughout the winter months, to keep you busy and out of bed! Join a winter sport, pick up a new hobby, or schedule some fun outings with the family and friends. Having things to look forward to and keep you busy is a great way to beat the winter blues.
- Talk to you doctor.
If you find that after trying several options to combat your feelings of depression, and you are still feeling very down and depressed, then it would be worth a conversation with your family doctor. That does not necessarily mean going on medication, but together, you could look at some options to help you feel more positive.