- Holiday Depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder
- 15 Simple Ways To Overcome Depression And Sadness
- 1. Practice Mindfulness
- 2. Listen to Upbeat Music
- 3. Use Touch
- 4. Include Omega 3 Fatty Acids in Your Diet
- 5. Stop the Negative Self Talk
- 7. Distract Yourself
- 8. Use More Light
- 9. Try Cognitive Therapy
- 10. Write in a Journal
- 12. Get Enough Sleep
- 13. Forgive Others
- 14. Exercise
- 15. Don’t give up
- Seasonal Affective Disorder: 6 Ways to Banish the Winter Blues
- Light Therapy To Banish Seasonal Affective Disorder
- 5 Ways To Be Happy When Life Makes You Sad
- Seasonal Affective Disorder: 10 Ways to Banish SAD for Good This Winter
- Let there be light
- Symptoms of SAD
- Symptoms include:
- 5 ways to combat SAD
- Give yourself a rude awakening
- Chase that high
- Join the rat race
- Go Christmas shopping
- Take a sunshine supplement
- 1. Whole grains and complex carbs
- Dark greens
- Sweet potatoes
- Dark chocolate
- Banish SAD Syndrome this Winter
- Banish Depression from Your System – Isha Yoga
Holiday Depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder
The holiday season, stretching from Thanksgiving through New Years, can be a time of joy, celebration, gatherings with family and friends and reflection of blessings.
This is not the case for all, as many people reflect on their current situation, be it financial, relational, spiritual or other. They look at the past with disappointment and to the future with uncertainty.
Holiday Depression and SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder are two distinct mental health conditions that are real during this time of year.
According to Mental Health America, many factors can cause the “holiday blues”: stress, fatigue, unrealistic expectations, over-commercialization, financial constraints, and the inability to be with one's family and friends.
The demands of shopping, parties, family reunions and house guests also contribute to feelings of tension. People may also develop other stress responses such as headaches, excessive drinking, over-eating and difficulty sleeping. Even more people experience post-holiday let down after January 1.
This can result from disappointments during the preceding months compounded by the excess fatigue and stress (www.mentalhealthamerica.net).
To cope with stress and depression during the holidays, Mental Health America recommends: keep expectations for the holiday season manageable, be realistic about what you can and cannot do, remember the holiday season does not banish reasons for feeling sad or lonely, leave “yesteryear” in the past and look toward the future, do something for someone else, enjoy activities that are free, be aware that excessive drinking will only increase your feelings of depression, celebrate the holidays in a new way, spend time with supportive and caring people, and most important – save time for yourself!
Symptoms of depression during the winter months, with symptoms subsiding during the spring and summer months, may be a sign of seasonal affective disorder (SAD). SAD is a mood disorder associated with depression and related to seasonal variations of light.
Symptoms include depression, anxiety, mood changes, sleep problems, lethargy, overeating, social and sexual problems. A diagnosis of SAD can be made after three consecutive winters of these symptoms if they are also followed by complete remission of symptoms in the spring and summer months.
Treatments include spending time outdoors, phototherapy, and medication if indicated.
Resources exist in Augusta County, Staunton and Waynesboro, to help get through the holiday season, should you or someone you know exhibit any of these symptoms. First of all, contact your health care provider. Secondly, contact Mental Health America of Augusta at 886-7181 or 949-0169. Or go online at www.mentalhealthamerica.net.
Next, call the I & R: Information and Referral line at 211 for other needed resources or services in the area. For the many that do not understand mental health diagnosis, signs and symptoms, causes and treatments, Mental Health America of Augusta has resources for you to take to your church, civic group or place of work to reduce the stigma of Mental Illness.
Contact Donna Gum at the above listed phone numbers or at mhaa [at] ntelos.net .
Article provided by Dana H. Breeding, RN Health Educator of Community Wellness, at Augusta Health. To contact Dana Breeding, RN related to the above information please call (540) 332-4988 or ((540) 932-4988.
15 Simple Ways To Overcome Depression And Sadness
Depression can be debilitating and is very different from just feeling unhappy. Usually, there is a reason for unhappiness such as being rejected or not getting the job you wanted. Depression is a pervasive feeling. It’s almost as if you are in a black tunnel with no light.
Hope disappears and the things you used to find enjoyable become a chore. Even winning the lottery would not snap someone depression and it is never a good idea to tell someone who is depressed to sort themselves out and pull themselves together.
Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple, but there are ways to alleviate the symptoms of depression.
1. Practice Mindfulness
A depressed mind tends to mull over all that is wrong and worries unnecessarily about all the negative possibilities that may emerge in the future. This negative thought cycle reinforces misery and is not helpful in managing to overcome depression.
Mindfulness involves focusing on the present moment and is a skill that needs to be practiced. More often than not, our brains are full of thoughts and focusing on the present moment seems unnatural for our minds. Practice on engaging your senses in the moment. Focus on touch, taste, sight, sound and smell.
Engaging the senses leaves less time for worry.
2. Listen to Upbeat Music
I have always thought of music as food for the soul. An upbeat tune can change an atmosphere instantly and create a more positive vibe. Listening to upbeat, happy music alters brain chemistry and can improve your mood.
3. Use Touch
Science shows that touch therapies can help some people overcome depression, lower the stress hormone cortisol and increase the feel-good hormone oxytocin. Therapies to consider include acupuncture, acupressure, massage, reiki and reflexology.
4. Include Omega 3 Fatty Acids in Your Diet
Research has shown that depressed people often lack a fatty acid known as EPA.
Participants in a 2002 study featured in the Archives of General Psychiatry took just a gram of fish oil each day and noticed a 50-percent decrease in symptoms such as anxiety, sleep disorders, unexplained feelings of sadness, suicidal thoughts, and decreased sex drive. Omega-3 fatty acids can also lower cholesterol and improve cardiovascular health. Get omega-3s through walnuts, flaxseed and oily fish salmon or tuna.
5. Stop the Negative Self Talk
Depressed people tend to see the world in a negative way. When things go wrong they blame themselves and when they go right, they put it down to luck. Depression reinforces self doubt and feelings of worthlessness.
Monitor your inner negative talk and make allowances for this type of thinking by reminding yourself that your thinking is that of a depressed person, not a healthy functioning person. Don’t take your thoughts seriously when you are feeling low.
Acknowledge the thoughts but this doesn’t mean you have to believe them. Keep perspective.
Accept that your mental state is not entirely balanced. During depression, we tend to see the negatives in everything and find it harder to be balanced about what is going on. Gently remind yourself that you are tuned into the ‘negativity channel’ and don’t listen to your thinking.
It is definitely distorted when you are depressed. This idea alone can provide some comfort when the world appears bleak. It won’t last forever. Remind yourself that change is constant and that you won’t always feel this way. Be patient and do your best to look after yourself in the meantime.
Eat well and get a decent amount of sleep. Say to yourself “This shall pass”.
7. Distract Yourself
If possible, do your best to distract yourself from over thinking. Your thoughts are your enemy when depression sets in. Play with a pet or go for a walk. Read a book if you are able to concentrate or finish a puzzle. Do anything that takes your mind off your fears and worries. Keeping busy is an effective way to overcome depression.
8. Use More Light
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is known for causing low mood over the winter months when there is less sunlight.
Invest in a sunlamp – a 300 watt bulb within three feet for 20 minutes three times a day can help.
SAD symptoms can include problems sleeping, anxiety, depression, irritability, fatigue, apathy and loss of libido and using light can help to overcome depression and these other symptoms.
9. Try Cognitive Therapy
Cognitive therapy can be extremely useful in counteracting depression and is the principle that certain ways of thinking can trigger certain health problems, such as depression.
The counselor helps you to understand your current thought patterns and identify any harmful or false ideas and thoughts that you have that can trigger depression or make it worse.
The aim is to change your ways of thinking to avoid these ideas as well as help your thought patterns to be more realistic and helpful.
10. Write in a Journal
A journal can work in two ways. Use it to write down fears and worries. Sometimes, having an outlet in this way can be soothing and ease your mind. Another good way to use a journal (I prefer this way) is to write at least five things down every day that you are grateful for.
This forces us to think more positively and can help to remind us that things are never that bad. In a gratitude journal, you can write about anything that happened in the day that made you feel appreciative. A stranger smiling at you, the sun shining..
anything positive will do!
This can be one of the hardest things to do when feeling depressed but it is one of the most rewarding activities. Force yourself to go out. Isolating oneself from others may seem a good idea but put a limit on it and then get out there again. This can have a huge positive effect on your mood.
12. Get Enough Sleep
Sleep and mood are closely connected. Inadequate sleep can cause irritability and stress, while healthy sleep can enhance well-being. Studies have shown that even partial sleep deprivation has a significant effect on mood.Take steps to ensure adequate sleep will this will lead to improved mood and well-being.
The quality of your sleep directly affects the quality of your waking life, including your mental sharpness, productivity, emotional balance, creativity, physical vitality, and even your weight. No other activity delivers so many benefits with so little effort so aim for between 7.5 and 9 hours sleep per night.
13. Forgive Others
When we hold a grudge, we are the ones that feel the anger. The person whom we are angry with is probably merrily going about their business completely oblivious to your feelings. Don’t allow others to have this power over you.
They have may have caused you grief in the past, try not to allow that grief to continue – it only affects you, not them. Find a way to forgive – they are not worthy of your time.
Lighten the emotional load and you will improve your mood and help you to overcome depression.
Regular exercise has benefits for helping to overcome depression. Exercise releases endorphins which improve natural immunity and improve mood.
Besides lifting your mood, regular exercise offers other health benefits, such as lowering blood pressure, protecting against heart disease, cancer and boosting self-esteem.
Experts advise getting half an hour to an hour of moderate exercise, such as brisk walking at least three to four times per week.
15. Don’t give up
Depression can make you want to hide away from the world and disappear. It’s okay to take some time out but give yourself a time limit and then do something productive to improve your mood. Depression can be well managed (I know this from personal experience) and there can be a wonderful life beyond depression. Hang in there and keep the faith.
Although the above suggestions can be effective, depression that perseveres should be investigated further and seeing a Doctor to chat over any symptoms is a step in the right direction.
Seasonal Affective Disorder: 6 Ways to Banish the Winter Blues
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A lot of us go into hibernation mode every time the cold comes around, socializing less and feeling we only have enough energy for binge-watching TV shows.
But for the 15 per cent of Canadians who suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD)—depression that occurs every year, most often in the darker months—it goes beyond that. They oversleep, overeat, and feel guilty, irritable and hopeless.
The symptoms usually come on in the fall, peak in late January, and go away in the spring.
About three per cent of Canadians acquire a more severe form of SAD, which can have a devastating impact. But while the condition is now widely known, we still don’t know exactly what causes it.
The prevailing theory is that long winter nights throw off your circadian rhythm—the internal clock that regulates when you feel sleepy and when you’re alert.
“As the days get very short, some people have difficulty adapting to that change, and the body’s rhythm is thrown sync,” says Robert Levitan, a psychiatrist at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto.
That would explain why people who live closer to the equator, where the days are the same length year-round, are much less ly to acquire SAD; only one per cent of people living in Florida have it, for instance.
Another hypothesis is that the lack of sun changes your brain activity. If you don’t get enough light, your body produces fewer neurotransmitters serotonin, which helps keep your mood stable, and too much melatonin, the hormone that makes you feel sleepy.
SAD may also be hereditary; having a relative with the condition increases your chances of getting it by up to 17 per cent.
And a University of Iceland study that screened Winnipeggers for SAD found that those with Icelandic genes were significantly less ly to have the disorder, suggesting that people whose ancestors are from climates with less sun may have built-in resistance.
There is light at the end of the tunnel—and not just spring. For people who suffer from SAD—and really, for anyone made grumpy by 4:30 p.m. sunsets—a combination of lifestyle changes and doctor-recommended treatments can reduce symptoms and provide lasting relief. Read on to find out.
Here’s what you need to know about high-functioning depression.
Exposure to as much sun as possible helps. Keep your curtains open all day, and rearrange your furniture so you’re regularly in bright places in your home. Install skylights if you can.
Also, while artificial light isn’t as good as the real thing, adding more lamps to dark areas in your home is better than nothing. If you can afford it, head to the lands of minimal SAD near the equator.
A sunny vacation will offer a welcome, if temporary, respite from the winter blues.
Adopt these 13 healthy habits-they’re guaranteed to fight fatigue.
Winter’s long nights throw off your sleep cycle, but keeping a regular bedtime and wake time can help regulate it, and prevent both insomnia and oversleeping. Also, dim your lights at night and avoid screens for about two hours before heading to bed.
During the day, regular aerobic exercise can help you manage stress, feel more alert and increase your emotional resilience.
“When you exercise, your dopamine and serotonin levels rise,” explains Ted Jablonski, a family doctor in Calgary who has suffered from SAD for most of his life.
“Just 20 to 30 minutes, five or six days a week, can really change the chemistry in your brain.” A brisk noon-hour walk can do double duty, as you’ll get some sunlight, too.
If you’re suffering from chronic sleep problems, try these seven strategies!
When people become depressed, they also start to pull away from things they doing, and the more you withdraw, the less pleasure and sense of accomplishment they feel in general. It’s a downward spiral,” explains David Dozois, a psychologist and chair of clinical science and psychopathology at Western University in London, Ont.
He suggests making a point of finding wintertime ways to do whatever brings you joy during the summer, whether that’s socializing, playing a sport or being in a band. “I encourage patients to ‘fake it ’til you make it.’ Just do it, even if you don’t feel it at first,” he says.
Discover the surprising science behind friendship.
Light therapy using an ultraviolet-filtered lamp is the most common treatment for SAD. “Patients prefer it, and doctors it because it works quickly and it’s very potent,” says Levitan. People typically are encouraged to use their illuminated unit for at least half an hour a day in the morning, which essentially tricks their body into thinking it’s already spring.
“I found immediate relief with my light box,” says Diana Lillo, a 54-year-old Ontario-based entrepreneur who suffers from extreme cases of SAD. “When I sit in front of it, my mood changes, I feel more energetic and more at peace. The anxiety and depression just slip away.”
Some people with SAD also find “dawn simulation” helps—this is usually accomplished with a custom alarm clock connected to a light that gradually becomes brighter before your set wake up time. Its effectiveness has not been studied as much, but it works for many people and is easier to squeeze into a busy schedule.
Here are 13 depression treatments that can help you get back on track.
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is an effective way to combat seasonal affective disorder, or any depression, says Dozois. The treatment usually takes between 12 to 16 weeks to complete, and involves setting up tasks that challenge your behaviour—resisting the natural tendency to socialize less during the winter, for instance.
CBT practitioners also coach people to address the negative automatic thoughts that might, for example, keep a person from staying connected.
“If someone passes me at work and doesn’t say hello, my thought might be, He doesn’t me. Okay, that’s one possibility, but what’s another? Maybe he’s stressed about a deadline or maybe he didn’t see me,” explains Dozois.
“It’s putting that thought on trial, and coming up with an alternative, more valid one.”
Here are 13 things you need to know about optimism.
Antidepressants are also used to treat seasonal affective disorder, often alongside light therapy and CBT. “Typically we use medications that are activating, rather than those with a sedative effect,” explains Jablonski.
He usually prescribes Bupropion—which, un many other antidepressants, doesn’t usually cause sleepiness or weight gain—but selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are also common.
Those people who are already taking these drugs may simply increase their dose starting in the fall.
Combining treatments four, fix and six has turned winters around for Lillo. “My depression will always be with me, but having a toolbox that helps me feel better and deal with my emotions makes a huge difference,” she says.
Jablonski, who swears by his light box and regular exercise, tells his own SAD story often in the hopes that it will inspire others to seek help. In 2010, he even ran and biked all the way across Canada to raise awareness of the disorder.
“The existence of SAD is well-known now,” he says. “What isn’t as well-known is the extent of how disabling it can be—and that you can actually treat it and get better. My plea to those with SAD is: You don’t have to dread winter and lose months every year. You don’t have to suffer unnecessarily.”
Check out these ways to avoid the Sunday night blues.
Originally Published on sitename.com
Light Therapy To Banish Seasonal Affective Disorder
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Do you feel slower, sluggish or not quite as happy in the winter?
Maybe you even deal with depression that seems to get worse as the days get shorter?
I know exactly how that feels, and it’s not good. Winter can seem extremely long when you feel down or depressed
5 Ways To Be Happy When Life Makes You Sad
by Michele Rosenthal – August 31, 2016
When faced with someone’s sadness, how often have you offered the hollow, “Cheer up!” mantra? If you’ve been on the receiving end of that suggestion, then you know how seldom it translates to feel-good emotions. So how do you alleviate sadness? Successfully conquering sorrow begins with understanding why it sticks around, and ends with specific steps you can take to give it the boot.
A recent study published in Motivation and Emotion sheds light on why sadness can be so all-consuming, and answers the question why we feel sadness.
The study asked 233 participants to remember experiences of specific emotion, and how long each lasted. 27 ranked emotions sadness lasted the longest, far outranking feelings of shame, hatred and disgust.
Researchers concluded that the circumstances that cause sadness are ones we deem higher in value overall.
To banish sadness for good, you must take action to bring happiness in to your life – without being unauthentic. With that advice in mind, try implementing any of these five options to launch a crusade for feeling better:
- Suspend judgment: all emotions, sadness results from our assessment of a situation. Changing your attitude from judgment to observation reduces criticism and self-pity.
- Take action: Create a new experience for yourself by changing your psychology. Start looking at what you can do, rather than focusing on what you can’t. Then, develop a where-do-I-go-from-here strategy, equipped with action steps, a timeline and support.
- Revise expectations: Focusing on what’s missing or hurts creates thought patterns that expand and deepen the experience of sadness. Shifting focus to the values that a situation does meet allows you to connect to happier sensations. What you are doing is shifting from a perspective of expectations – the staunch belief that something will occur in exactly the way you imagined it – to intention – a commitment to how you want to show up in any moment, despite the details it presents.
- Create good feelings: Every thought creates a chemical release echoed by a physical sensation. This means that feeling happier, even in sad times, produces new chemical reactions and sensations. Do this by revisiting past feel-good events and savoring them or fast-forwarding to imagine a better future.
- Increase serotonin: Known as the “happiness hormone,” higher levels of this neurotransmitter have been proven to correlate to increased happiness. Ways to holistically achieve this increase include eating serotonin-inducing foods such as eggs, cheese, pineapple, tofu, salmon and turkey; getting a good dose of sunlight; adding a B6 vitamin; taking St John’s Wort; and committing to an exercise schedule that includes plenty of aerobic exercise – running and biking are my personal favorites.
The famous Greek philosopher and scientist, Aristotle, believed that the very purpose and meaning of life is to be happy. He said, “To live happily is an inward power of the soul.” Feeling happy in the midst of sadness takes work, but through that effort you can activate an even greater power of the soul to transform disappointment, loss and grief into a catalyst for becoming a happier you!
This article was first published on Rewire Me. To see the original post, click here.
By Michele Rosenthal. Click here for more! • Happiness • Emotional Healing • Emotions • Depression • Sadness
2020 Spirituality & Health MEDIA, LLC
Seasonal Affective Disorder: 10 Ways to Banish SAD for Good This Winter
Winter is finally here. Despite getting excited about the extra hour in bed, you’re cursing the dark reality of longer nights.
Many will spend every daylight hour locked in the office, which isn’t just bad news for your hard-earned summer tan.
Lack of sunlight is the most common cause of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a condition that can cause a long list of maladies including: depression, insomnia, anxiety and weight loss (not the good kind).
SAD has sometimes been mistakenly thought of as a “lighter” version of depression, but it’s not – it’s simply a different version of the same illness.
“People who truly have SAD are just as ill as people with major depressive disorder,” says Brenda McMahon, a psychiatry researcher at the University of Copenhagen. “They will have non-seasonal depressive episodes, but the seasonal trigger is the most common.”
A recent YouGov poll found that 29 per cent of UK adults will experience some kind of symptoms this winter, while six per cent of will suffer so badly they are unable to work or function properly.
Let there be light
While there are a variety of biological systems thought to be involved that have an impact on the way we feel in the winter, it is believed that one particular hormone, melatonin, which controls our sleep cycles, is “phased delayed” in people with severe SAD, meaning it is secreted at the wrong times of the day. As a result, we feel sluggish, tired and irritable and our stress levels will rise, impacting our mental wellbeing, immunity and overall health.
However, it is serotonin, a neurotransmitter which regulates anxiety, happiness and mood, that’s modulated by light that may have the biggest impact.
During the winter, there simply isn’t enough natural light, causing a drop in serotonin levels in the brain and therefor increasing the lihood of a depressive episode.
Symptoms of SAD
According to the NHS, symptoms of seasonal affective disorder are very similar to those of normal depression. The only difference is that they occur repetitively at a particularly time of year.
– A persistent low mood
– A loss of pleasure or interest in normal everyday activities
– Feeling irritable
– Low self-esteem
– Feeling stressed
– Reduced sex drive
– Becoming less sociable
5 ways to combat SAD
Getting more sun on your skin isn’t always an option. You can banish SAD more ways than you think. Here’s how to survive winter:
Give yourself a rude awakening
The prospect of a cold shower will make leaving your warm duvet more difficult but hear us out. Exposure to cold activates your sympathetic nervous system and, according to the journal Medical Hypotheses, increases your levels of noradrenaline to help fight feelings of unhappiness. Have a warm towel ready for when you jump out.
Chase that high
A morning spent pounding the pavements releases a cocktail of endorphins, anandamide (your body’s version of marijuana’s THC) and dopamine.
Together these hormones create an unbeatable high that’ll last all day and, because the dopamine binds to receptors in your brain’s pleasure circuit, it’s addictive.
Stock up on the best beginner's gear and start running for a high that lasts all winter, no comedown.
Join the rat race
Going door-to-door in the comfort of a company car might be your idea of the perfect commute, but it could also be the cause of your winter anxieties.
A University of East Anglia study found taking public transport fights your feelings of unhappiness by forcing you to interact with fellow commuters (no matter how grumpy they are).
It lessens feelings of loneliness and cheers you up. Honest.
Go Christmas shopping
Take a leaf the department stores’ books and get in the holiday spirit early. A Kyoto University study found the smell of pinewood is enough to significantly lower stress levels and relax your anxieties. You can use this as an excuse to buy your Christmas tree early or, if your second name is Scrooge, a pine scented air-freshener works just as well.
Take a sunshine supplement
No, not vitamin D: 5HTP is more potent. It's made from the amino acid tryptophan, which is converted into the neurotransmitter serotonin. Pop two tablets before bed to boost your levels of this happy hormone, fight feelings of depression and wake up smiling – even if it is raining outside.
1. Whole grains and complex carbs
During the winter our appetite increases. Many seek foods that they think will cheer them up but will actually have an opposite effect, leaving you feeling sluggish and down.
If you want to go hard on carbs, go for whole grains such as oatmeal or complex carbohydrates brown rice. These dense carbohydrates have been found to increase serotonin levels.
They will also leave you feeling fuller for longer.
A healthy salad isn’t many people’s first choice as a heart-warming winter meal. However, dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale and broccoli are rich in folate and vitamin B12, which have been found to boost serotonin levels.
Numerous studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids found in fish can help fight off depression by boosting production of dopamine and serotonin. Fatty fish are also great sources of vitamin D. What’s more, fish is a great muscle-builder.
A great seasonal vegetable. Full of folate, which plays an important role in the production of red blood cells, sweet potatoes sit lower on the Glycemic Index, helping maintain a steady blood-sugar level than your standard spud. You’ll have more energy and won’t crash shortly afterwards, either.
With the wind howling outside and the fire inside crackling, there’s no better time to put a film on, make yourself a cuppa and start dunking your chocolate. And we’re cool with that, providing you do it right.
Many studies have shown that eating dark chocolate can reduce stress-causing hormones, thanks to antioxidants called flavonoids. Pick something that is 75 per cent cocoa, and unsweetened.
It’s better for you, easier on your teeth and will limit those sudden sugar crashes.
Words: Ted Lane and Robert Hicks
Banish SAD Syndrome this Winter
As we find ourselves in the grips of Winter, we can begin to feel as bleak as the weather itself. The cause? That little syndrome called seasonal affective disorder.
The main culprit of SAD is the limited supply of sunlight during the winter season.
However, before you book that February trip to the Caribbean you may want to read our (less expensive) mood-boosting tips for battling the dreadful winter slog.
In Winter, our bodies tend to produce far more melatonin, or the ‘sleep hormone’. This can lead to us feeling lethargic and sleepy, even after we’ve clocked up a respectable 8 hours of shut-eye. In aid of a better sleep quality, exercise as regularly as possible.
Metabolic exercise is not only a great stress-reliever but also releases the ‘happy hormone’ serotonin, which can enlighten feelings of depression.
Why not try a group hot yoga or barre class with friends for an extra mood boost? Our Ariane Bra is the perfect stretch piece for these activities, crafted with technical fabric that wicks moisture away from the skin.
The Ariane Bra
Resist carb cravings, as sugar crashes will not only lower your mood but will only leave you wanting more.
Instead, nourish your body with lots of healthy fruits and vegetables known to battle depression such as citruses high in Vitamin C and dark, leafy greens.
In addition to this, opt for protein-based, balanced meals that are packed with valuable nutrients and slow-release energy; a healthy diet is incredibly important, not only for general wellbeing but for fighting the effects of SAD.
Supplement your health
If you find that there are simply not enough hours of sunlight in the day and jetting off on a Winter sun holiday is the question, consider taking a Vitamin D supplement throughout the season in order for your body to create the amount of the vitamin it needs. The most effective (and easiest) way to take this is via an oral spray that is absorbed straight into the bloodstream.
Get out and about
Banish those blues by making the absolute most of the limited Winter daylight to increase your Vitamin D intake.
If you work in an office, be sure you’re getting outdoors on your lunchbreak and spending as much time as possible outdoors of the weekend in aid of sapping up some much needed sunlight.
Double the positive effects of getting out and about by going for a hike or a run and get that serotonin pumping. Do it in our Technical Knit kit, designed for high impact activity and your most comfortable workout yet.
The Technical Knit kit.
Light it up
Since it is thought that the lack of sunlight is one of the key causes of SAD, it makes sense that getting more of it could ease symptoms.
Light therapy is an alternative treatment; SAD lamps mimic the natural light that our bodies need to help balance and improve our mood and reduce feelings of lethargy and depression.
Light therapy is an effective way to treat seasonal affective disorder by combating the symptoms on those dark and gloomy days of the year where you need the natural light most.
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Banish Depression from Your System – Isha Yoga
Sadhguru speaks on how to handle yourself in such a way that you can banish depression from your system.
Sadhguru: We need to understand what depression is. Now, what is a “low”? What is it that happens within you? Fundamentally, you expected something to happen and it did not happen.
You expected somebody or something to be your way or the world or the destiny to be your way, and it did not happen. In other words, you are simply against what is happening; that’s all.
Maybe you are against a person, maybe you are against a whole situation, maybe you are against life itself. Accordingly, the depression will run deeper and deeper.
Why are you against something? Only because things did not go your way, isn’t it? Why should the whole world go your way? Please know, the world does not go your stupid way. Either you have no faith in the creator or you have no acceptance, or both, and you have a hyper-sensitive ego. That is why you get depressed.
In yoga, depression is handled at the level of the body, mind and the energies.
Depression makes you cynical and is deeply self-damaging. Depressed people only hurt themselves more. Killing need not necessarily mean physical killing. A depressed person is always trying to cause more damage to himself.
A man who goes out with the sword and kills somebody, his ego is not as sensitive and it does not need as much nurturing as a depressed man’s ego. The violent man can be very easily settled.
Have you seen this on the streets? When people get into a fight, if there is one man with a little wisdom, if he just handles them right, those people who are trying to kill each other one moment, the next moment, they will drop it and become friends and go off. But this is not so with the depressed person. He will carry this for life.
Whether they do it consciously or not, these people go on sharpening their knife and cutting their own heart. Why will a person go on hurting himself? Generally it is to get sympathy. For a very depressed person, normal sympathy is not sufficient; somebody should bleed with him.
Now what is there in you that can get hurt? If I beat your body with a stick, the body will get hurt; that’s different. Otherwise, what is it that gets hurt within you? Just the ego, isn’t it? The mind and the inner nature cannot get hurt. It is only the ego that gets hurt. So if you are saying, “I want to grow,” growth means going beyond this, trampling your ego and going ahead.
One can make any emotion into a creative force in their life. If your sadness reminds you that you are incomplete, it is good; make use of your sadness to grow.
But, when you get sad, if you are going to get irritable and angry, and that whole world is wrong, you are a fool. Do you want to make this sadness into anger or into love and compassion? It is very easy when you are sad, to become compassionate.
It is already a dissolving kind of energy; you can use it for further dissolution which leads you to your ultimate well-being.
Depression makes you cynical and is deeply self-damaging. Depressed people only hurt themselves more.
The unfortunate reality with people right now is that their humanity will function only when they are mauled by life. For most people, maturity will not happen without knowing sadness and pain. Otherwise they never understand what is happening with them and with anybody else around them.
In yoga, depression is handled at the level of the body, mind and the energies. If the necessary balance and vibrancy is brought about in the physical, mental and energy bodies, to be blissful is very natural. In a blissful being, depression can never exist.
Editor’s Note: Sadhguru offers Isha Kriya, a free, online guided meditation that helps bring health and wellbeing. Daily practice of this simple yet effective 12-minute process can transform one’s life.
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