Beating the Winter Blues

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by Valentina F via Flickr

Just in case you didn’t know – it’s winter. Every year it amazes us all. If you were flying to England after your Christmas break, then you know that even airports can be surprised by winter in January. And you’ve probably also noticed that there’s no snow here. All that falls down from the sky is rain. Specially delivered to you by the universe just to make you even less happy and less full of life.

Is your mood low? Do you get easily annoyed? Have you lost interest in everyday activities? How about feeling despair, guilt and worthlessness? Lacking energy during a day and sleeping more than usual? Craving carbs and gaining weight? It sounds like the everyday life of a university student, and that may sound funny (somehow), but the truth is that all of those are symptoms of SAD (seasonal affective disorder), known also as “winter depression” or simply – “winter blues”. The bad news is that the real causes of it are unknown. It probably has something to do with lack of sunlight. But! – the good news depends on your relationship with NHS, and if it’s better than mine, then you can go to see your GP, who should recommend you the most suitable treatment for SAD.

As we now know that winter blues is a real thing, and you can go to see a doctor if you can’t cope with it. There are other things small changes to can make to aid beating the blues. Believe it or not – it’s said there are “scientifically-backed” ways to do it. “Make your environment brighter” – it’s winter, it gets dark pretty early, but sit under a lamp and you can pretend you’re in the Canary Islands. “Eat smarter”, and when they say smarter they mean that chocolate can save you by enhancing your mood. They don’t need to tell me this twice. “Exercise” advice doesn’t really look good after the previous one, but working out can boost your mood pretty efficiently. That’s what they say at least. “Turn on the tunes” is probably checked by most of you every weekend by going to a club, so no problem with that. “Plan a vacation” – research shows that the simple act of planning can make you happier but I don’t how it supposes to work when you’re dreaming about Waikiki beach but there’s only British weather outside. “Help others” – because when you can’t cope with yourself, the best you can do is to support the others. And finally, the craziest one – “go outside”.

Ironically, at the moment of writing it, there’s nice weather outside. Although, we can be sure it’s not going to last long and winter blues can come back just like that. In this situation, I’d like to ask for your attention. Alright! Go outside and buy chocolate, swap your background photo for some tropics and remember that summer will come. Someday.  Eventually.