That poor old sad sack above is my Maxi boy and he’s old, cold, and has a couple of sore legs courtesy of a run in with a pair of clippers at the dog groomers.
He looks pretty much like how I feel today too.
Do you find yourself feeling tearful, withdrawn, depressed or just generally down in the dumps at this time of the year?
I’m talking more than the usual premenstrual semi psycho and of action here.
If you answered yes, you could be suffering from SADs - Seasonal Affective Disorder - a legitimate condition that affects an estimated one in 300 of us Aussies and is brought on by the changes in light and temperature during Autumn and winter and the effect it has on our bodies circadian rhythms.
Or then again, you may have been a bear in another life and you are pissed of at the fact you are a human in this life and the injustice of it being socially unacceptable to disappear into hibernation for 3 months a year.
I for one am a happier and more energetic person in Summer and whether it be that I crave the warmer weather, sunshine and longer days that Summer affords us or that I am genuinely down with a dose of the SADS - I really have no idea.
I’ll leave that one to the scientists to figure out and instead share with you five ways the experts suggest we can beat the blues that many of us feel at this time of the year.
GET SOME LIGHT
Now I’m not referring to the late night blinding glow of your iPad as you nestle under your warm doona people and dose up on GOTs - nope I am talking about proper sunshine from that big ole fire ball in the sky.
Mid morning to mid afternoon sun is apparently the most therapeutic during winter, so rug yourself up and get yourself outdoors. Go for a walk, sit with a cuppa, just do whatever it takes to ensure you can soak up some of those warming rays however and whenever you can.
If you need to be stuck indoors, open up those curtains and let the light steam in - your body is craving more daylight during these months so you have to give it whatever you can.
Look, If you are anything like me then the last thing you probably feel like doing when it is flipping freezing degrees outside is to actually get dressed and get out of your pjs… but, I also know that the endorphins released during exercise are pretty much the best natural antidepressant you could ever hope for.
Of course, if you actually take anti-depressants like I do, exercise is not necessarily going to replace the need for your daily dose… but it will certainly help yeah?!
AVOID THE JUNK & STODGE
Oh crap! Now THAT sucks!!!
I know how tempting it is to dunk your head into a bucket of Mac and Cheese on a cold wintery day… but we need to back away from the carbs you guys. Too much of the stodgy stuff will only serve to make us feel sluggish and tired and that’s not going to help our mood.
Apparently we need to eat more colourful whole foods during the colder months to boost our moods and drink plenty of water to avoid becoming dehydrated from all the indoor heating.
Oh and chocolate - yep you can eat chocolate because it is proven to enhance your mood and relieve anxiety - bless you Gods of cacao.
PUMP IT LOUDER
Scientists have long known that upbeat music significantly boosts our moods so load up your favourite playlists, pump it LOUD and reap the rewards. Instant mood booster - winning!
HAVE A DOONA DAY
If all else fails and you just can’t shake that blergh feeling, sulk into those flange PJs and a spend a day under the doona with some chick flicks on Netlfix, a good book and an endless supply of Cheetos.
OK so it goes against all of the suggestions above, but sometimes you just have to say 'screw it' and do what feels good.
On that note... I have a date with an electric blanket and a bag of cheetos.
Stay warm you guys.
Do you love or loathe the colder seasons?
How do you battle the cold weather blues?