The autumn season can bring about feelings of sadness and melancholy. If you find yourself experiencing the blues this season, know that you are not alone. There are several ways to combat these feelings and emerge from this season feeling refreshed and happier.
Shifts in the weather and environment can cause a certain level of anxiety and negative emotions in some folks, hence the autumn blues.
Transitions, in general, can be quite uncomfortable for human beings to the extent that any changes might bring sadness or depression to them, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Linnea Butler, founder of Bay Area Mental Health in Campbell, California, explains.
Seasonal depression like autumn blues typically wears out on its own within a short period. However, if you feel lingering depressive symptoms and physical symptoms like insomnia and headaches, it’s best to seek help from professionals.
What does autumn blues feel like:
• Low mood and energy levels
• Less interest in activities you usually enjoy doing
• Restlessness and irritability
• Appetite loss
• Little to no motivation
• Concentration issues
5 Simple Tips to Feel Happier This Autumn
Make your autumn a happy and productive one by considering and implementing these tips in your everyday life:
Build a Good Sleep Hygiene
If you often find yourself struggling to sleep at night, try to build a regular sleep schedule. Aim to get ready for bed and wake up at the same time daily.
To further improve your sleep, avoid using too much cell phone during bedtime as exposure to bright lights can disrupt your biological clock. Instead, consider keeping your room dark and cool to maintain a balanced circadian rhythm or your sleep-wake cycle.
You also reap the benefits of restorative sleep by allowing your body to sleep at night comfortably. When you are well-rested, you have more energy and motivation to function during the day.
Writing Down Your Thoughts
Tracking your mood regularly through journaling may have an impact on your mental health, Dr. Michelle Riba, Professor and Associate Director of the University of Michigan Comprehensive Depression Center, says. Writing down your thoughts and feelings helps with reducing anxiety, promoting positive emotions, and increasing self-awareness.
Eat Healthy Foods
Autumn blues can make you lose your appetite; and when this happens, you may become easily irritated and distracted. As you know, eating nutritious foods like fresh fruits and vegetables gives you the energy and productivity boost to accomplish things efficiently.
Supply your body with essential nutrients to stay healthy and happy. Eat a balanced diet and reduce sugar intake by consuming protein foods, greens, and fibre-rich foods. Also, don’t forget to drink water to keep yourself hydrated!
Spending your day inside your room can be quite irresistible, especially when you feel gloomy. However, try your best to go outdoors and get some Vitamin D from the sunlight. Vitamin D is important for boosting immune function, as well as producing high serotonin levels– a chemical known to improve mood and cognitive performance.
Lack of Vitamin D may result in fatigue, weakness, and muscle pain. Make sure to catch some sunlight whenever possible to reduce the effect of autumn blues and improve your daily life.
Aside from the sun, you can get your dose of Vitamin D from foods like fatty fish, orange juice, and yoghurt.
We know cleaning is the last thing you want to do when you’re sad, but hear us out. The simple act of cleaning can be therapeutic and relaxing to your mind. It frees your mind from negative thoughts all the while being productive.
By decluttering the home, you declutter the mind as well. Furthermore, having a clean and less cluttered environment gives you a sense of accomplishment. Try to practise the art of cleaning by performing simple housework for 20 minutes to help lessen stress and anxiety.
It’s true you cannot do anything about the changing seasons, but there are ways to reduce the effects of feeling sad and to improve your wellness. And if the tips listed above are not improving your mood, consider a visit to a doctor or a mental health professional.
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