6 Proven Methods for Beating Seasonal Depression (SAD)
With the start of Autumn, a lot in our everyday life changes. The days get shorter, while the nights become longer. The weather also gets colder, which makes us stay at home more of the time. All of this plus more can result in a person feeling depressed during the colder months of the year. This condition is called seasonal affective disorder (SAD), most commonly referred to as seasonal depression. If you consider yourself one of those people who tend to sink into melancholy during the winter, we are here to help! While everyone is different and unique, there are some strategies and habits that have been proven to help alleviate seasonal depression. In this article, we will explore the proven methods for beating seasonal depression and thriving all year round:
Let’s take a look at the most effective methods for beating seasonal depression
In this article
6 Proven Methods for Beating Seasonal Depression
#Start Preparing in the Fall
The first thing you need to know is that it is best to start preparing in the fall. The fall is a transition period that allows you to settle in into the new reality. So, while preparing your wardrobe for winter, start preparing your mind and body as well. So, start with enjoyable activities that are going to lift your mood. Go on walks, initiative dates with friends, dive into slow living hobbies, engage in creative activities. Try to do at least one thing a day that is going to leave you feeling better! By the time winter arrives, you would have already set the tone and prepared mentally for what’s to come instead of starting from scratch.
Start preparing your mind and body in the Autumn
#Start Taking Vitamin D
Vitamin D is extremely important for people who suffer from melancholy and depression. During the fall and winter, we get a lot less sunlight than the summer, which means that we need to supplement vitamin D. This vitamin is essential for regulating our mood and keeping us in good health. So, if you see the sun out during these months, make sure to go out, even if it is for 10 minutes. The sun is the best source of vitamin D, and the fresh air and breeze have been known to reduce stress in the body. So, start supplementing with vitamin D in the fall to help your body build up and maintain its reserves, while also helping you deal with depression and the side effects. You can take vitamin D in liquid and tablet form.
Vitamin D is essential for regulating our mood and keeping us healthy
#Get Fresh Air
As we mentioned, getting fresh air every day is super important for beating anxiety and depression. Spending time outside in nature is the easiest way to still your mind, and live in the moment. Everything in nature is happening right now, so it will help you to exist without your pain and worries. Try to get some fresh air in the first two hours after waking up. If you do not mind gloomy and rainy weather, go outside even for five minutes. If you exercise outdoors, it will be even better for you!
Getting fresh air in the first few hours after waking up is crucial
#Make a Routine
It has been found that people who are prone to seasonal depression and anxiety do better with a little structure and routine. Of course this is easier said than done, but if you start early enough it will be easier by the time winter arrives. So, think about the habits you want to include in your fall/winter routine. You can spend extra time doing your skincare at night, or read in the afternoons. Maybe you can go for a walk in the morning, and go to sleep at the same time. These habits will be beneficial for your circadian rhythm and overall moon and motivation levels.
Fill your days with pleasant activities that can help you build structure
#Try Light & Aroma Therapy
Your senses can be very helpful in times when you are feeling down. For example, light can be extremely stimulating or relaxing. So, ditch the overhead lights and create a more tranquil atmosphere with dimmer, more romantic lights. Another thing you can do is to invest in a dawn simulator. These alarm clocks do not wake you up abruptly, but instead they use light to imitate the sun rise. That way, you will wake up gradually, more relaxed and motivated. Aroma therapy is also a great tool for beating seasonal depression. They stimulate the brain in the area that controls our moods, as well as the areas of sleep and appetite. So, combine aroma therapy with a relaxing bath after a long day at work, or reading in a candle lit room.
Light and smell can both affect your brain positively and improve your mood
#Know When to Reach Out
Our last piece of advice is to know when to reach out to friends and family and when to be alone. Sometimes we might feel that staying home is all we want to do, and that is okay. But be mindful and recognize when a meeting with a loved one can help pull you out of a slump. Choose your support system and do not self-isolate in time of need. Instead, find a balance and make time for yourself, but also for those that love and appreciate you. If you find it hard to talk to your close people, reach out for professional help or an online support group. There are always options for those that seek them.
Be mindful about when you need to be alone, and when to reach out
Now you know the best methods for beating seasonal depression!