At this time of year most people are celebrating the beginning of a new season. We are done with the heat of summer and are excited to pull out our snug knits and scarves again. However, for many people including myself the reeling in of Autumn and Winter can cause higher levels of sadness, and anxiety and can lead to a loss of energy and motivation. I mean who doesn't find it being dark by 4pm at least a little bit depressing?! Seasonal affective disorder is very much a thing. In fact it's proven by medicine that the lack of light can cause you to feel down!
I thought I would share a list of the things I've learned to do to help me stay upbeat as the clocks go back.
Get up when the sun gets up
Most of us have to get up early for work or school anyways but I have found it so important to not sleep in too much on my days off. There is nothing worse for the mood than staying in bed til noon and only having 4 hours of day light. If you want to catch up on your zzz's after the week, just go to bed earlier and set your alarm for around sunrise. Even if it's dull, as it usually is where I live in a/w, having as much hours of brightness in your day as possible makes all the difference.
Spend time outdoors
For me, it is essential for my well-being to spend some time outside. Seriously, I would crack up otherwise, the worst thing in the world for me is to spend all day every day cooped up inside. I find it quiet hard to get out in winter though since Irish weather is the worst and I'm in work when it's bright out. But last year I really pushed myself to go out whenever possible, even when it was freezing and almost dark. The fresh air and the smell of nature (is that weird?) can do wonders for your mood.
Stay in your routine
When the dark days roll in it's so easy to cancel all the things you used to do throughout the summer in order to snuggle up under a duvet away from the cold but this is not a good idea! It will only make you feel useless. So whatever it is you do whether it be going to the gym, playing a sport or taking a class don't brush it off because you can't be bothered going out. The change of season will have much less of a negative affect on you if you don't change your life around it!
Enjoy indoor activities
Remember, the longer nights aren't so bad it means you can do all the things you wanted to do in the summer but felt too guilty to do. Like watch every episode of a Netflix series back to back, Play the sims for 2 hours, blog more (which I plan on doing!) play board games, knit.. what ever it is that floats your boat!
Take up a new hobby
The last point got me thinking that it would be really helpful to try something new in the A/W or spend more time rekindling an old hobby. For me, I'm going to try and draw more. I used to love art and drawing and now with the long wet evenings rolling in, what better distraction is there?!
Appreciate the positives
Despite the fact the shorter days put me in a bad mood I still see the good in this time of year and that always helps me to feel a little better. I love shopping for new A/W clothes and experimenting with different styles of make-up. I adore the cosiness of it, like getting to sit in by the fire with a hot choc watching my favourite tv-show. Plus, Halloween is one of my favourite holidays and Christmas is on the horizon. Focusing on all of the great stuff helps me come out of the blues and I guess that's why I write so many Autumn themed blog posts.
Are you like me and sometimes feel sad due to the days getting shorter and the weather getting more gloomy? If so I would love to know what you do to make yourself feel more upbeat! Let me know in the comments.