As most Christmas decorations go back into storage while temperatures drop and snowbanks grow it can feel a bit blah out there. Looking outside to a palette of gray, combined with shorter days and longer nights, can lead to some finding it to be a hard time of year to be positive. According to psychiatry researcher Brenda McMahon, “It’s estimated that as many as 1 in 3 people living in the Northern Hemisphere struggle with the ‘winter blues’.” But what is ‘Winter Blues’? Is it the same as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)? The answer is no, however some of the blues are characterized as SAD. But more about SAD in a later post!
Those people who are not diagnosed with SAD report just feeling blue, slow, tired and flat and uninterested. Stanford Ph.D. candidate Kari Liebowitz found that after surveying people that live with months of 24-hour darkness still describe themselves as happy people. By creating a positive mindset about celebrating the season of darkness, people were able to stay optimistic, energetic and motivated.
Try to incorporate these 3 practices into your daily routine to avoid the Winter Blues:
- Get outside – for example: bundle up and go for a walk around the block
- Appreciate the unique aspects that only this season can offer – such as admiring how pretty the snow capped mountains look
- Look forward to tomorrow – potentially add new activities into your life to create excitement
To find out more ways to add a little pep to your step during this season, contact Safe and Sound Therapeutics.