The SAD seasonal affective disorder season has arrived. There is definitely a chill in the air now, after the long hot summer days, we are becoming aware that the colours are changing from Summer greens to Autumn reds, the nights are drawing in and a new season is becoming established. The flip-flops and t-shirts are being replaced by boots and jumpers. Does this give you a comforting warm feeling or the opposite? Which camp are you in?
For some, the change of seasons is a time for reflection, nostalgic memories of playing in the crisp sunburnt leaves, bonfires, warming comfort food, and spending more time inside.
For those with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), there is a real struggle with low mood and loss of energy.
This year, however, the change of season brings challenges for us all, whichever camp we fall into. How do we keep the inner fire burning? How will we adapt this year to a more solitary existence?
For some, who are already wishing it was over and we could fast-forward the Autumn and Winter months to the Spring, I would suggest giving some thought to how you can manage low mood, develop resilience and adapt to the changed circumstances. What opportunities does it bring? Focus on what you can do in the time, despite the restrictions, that you find enjoyable, and gives you a sense of achievement.
Try and prioritise your physical and mental health. Eating healthily, exercising, and staying connected with friends and family via a screen or a phone will all help.
“Immersing yourself in nature typically has the sort of health outcomes we could only dream of getting from a spa,” Dr. Katie Cooper.
I have introduced my weight-loss clients to ‘mindful walking’ and it has had a dramatic effect on their progress as well as their mood. When we walk mindfully we really notice things that we wouldn’t normally and, as a result, the experience of walking becomes so much richer and more enjoyable. Colours are brighter and sounds and smells sharper.
Walking has never become such an important part of people’s lives. During the lockdown, people were walking more than ever before and it has such a positive effect on our well-being. Walking is an easy, enjoyable, and safe way to help us feel uplifted. It boosts immunity and according to Dr. Katie Cooper, “Immersing yourself in nature typically has the sort of health outcomes we could only dream of getting from a spa.”
The changing of seasons is all part of the circle of life, so let’s embrace the Autumn and take the opportunity to immerse ourselves in nature and keep our spirits up.
If you are struggling with low mood and anxiety due to the current pandemic and need support, do please get in touch via my website for an online appointment.