A winter dip, winter blues, winter depression… It all falls under the heading Seasonal Affective Disorder : SAD. The cause is a change in the melatonin level because we absorb less daylight as the nights get longer. The effects are diverse and are noticeable much earlier in the year (early autumn) than you would expect. That is why it is so difficult to recognize SAD. Dealing with it is even more difficult.
Symptoms of a winter dip
Excessive fatigue makes us irritable and makes us less sociable. Because we feel more depressed, a lot of things go less well than usual. We are entering a negative spiral with rock bottom in mid-January/February. You may suffer from unexplained muscle aches, headaches and intestinal problems.
Your concentration is hard to find, you experience a kind of misty chaos in your head that makes you seem to remember nothing and you burst into tears at the slightest thing. The only grip on a day can be found in cake, chocolate, candy, snacks and large plates of carbohydrate-rich food. Which of course is not good for the line (and your self-image).
Many people suffer from SAD – hundreds of thousands of people suffer from seasonal problems every year. It is plausible that highly sensitive people experience discomfort sooner than people with a less sensitive system. Actually, our body reacts directly to nature and would like less intensive days. The problem is that in our minds we think differently: we want to feel good and be as productive and active as in the summer. Time to take action and arm our bodies as best we can against the seasonal effects. Lifestyle changes relieve symptoms and can make winter bearable.
10 tips to get through the winter
What can you do?
1. Meet your food needs with lots of fruit, vegetables and dried fruits. Where you learn that you have to listen carefully to your body, you now have to go against your feelings. Avoid fast carbohydrates and refined sugars. And leave the alcohol behind too – it’s for sultry, summer evenings.
2. Choose foods that are anti-inflammatory .
3. Have warm lemon water with your breakfast. A fresh start full of vitamins.
4. Force yourself to exercise, preferably outdoors. Just walking is enough. Going outside for half an hour every day makes you physically stronger and improves your mood.
5. Go outside as much as possible to take in as much daylight as possible. Choose your workplace near a window and install daylight lamps.
6. Purchase Light Therapy Glasses or Energy Lamp or choose another form of light therapy
7. Make sure you sleep optimally. Go to bed around the same time every day and get up around the same time. Avoid the light from screens (telephone, tablet, TV) in the evenings or use blue light filter glasses.
8. Still too tired to get through the day? There is nothing wrong with a power nap during the day. Limit your afternoon nap to about half an hour. This provides sufficient energy for the rest of the day and prevents your day/night rhythm from being disrupted.
9. Take a cold shower . If you turn the thermostat down every day at the end of your shower and stay under the cold water for 30 seconds, your resistance will benefit. And you need that resistance to feel optimal spiritually.
10. Make your life fun and enjoyable. Set up your house in such a way that it is a warm nest where you like to stay. Then it doesn’t hurt to let social happenings pass you by. It’s nice at home and you’re fine there.