8 Tips to prevent Seasonal Depression and develop Seasonal Euphoria
You recognise this?
You hear your alarm go off in the morning and the first thing you think is, “This is way too early, I’ll close my eyes for a while,” while pressing the snooze button. You doze off again and suddenly the alarm goes off again and you think: ‘hell no’, after which you press the snooze button again and doze off again. At some point you are aware that you have already pressed the snooze button a few times and that you have to work today.
“Do I really need this work?” ????
You absolutely don’t feel like getting up, because it’s cold and it’s still dark. Preferably you would stay in bed for another hour. With your eyes still half closed, you get up and get ready anyway. You actually have to hurry a bit, but you can’t do it yet. You want to make yourself a cup of coffee, but you forget to put your mug under the Nespresso machine. Shoot, now that too!
It seems as if your brain is only running at half revs, you can hardly concentrate, your memory sometimes seems like a sieve. It just doesn’t go in. You feel a little gloomy, demotivated and disinterested. Also at work you are less productive than usual and you lose a bit of courage.
And where do those binges suddenly come from, by the way? A month ago everything went fine and I slimmed down and now I have gained 1.5kg again! Out of frustration, hopelessness and powerlessness, you take that bar of chocolate out of the cupboard.
Then at night you still have to choose what to eat and you don’t know it at all. You don’t really feel like doing anything, except the things you know you’ll gain weight from or that you can’t really do well with.
Relatable? This is SDD, or Seasonally Dependent Depression.
What you really need at that moment:
Daylight and sunlight affect our mood and energy levels, but also our sleep rhythm itself. Through a certain process in our body, our happiness hormone serotonin is converted into our sleep hormone melatonin.
- Go outside for 10-30 minutes a day during your lunch break or go for a walk. If you have a park nearby, you can go there and immediately absorb the extra oxygen from the trees and nature helps you relax.
- Bring a morning lamp into your home so that it gradually lightens when it’s time to get up. This can help your nervous system reduce your sleep hormone and increase cortisol. No worries; Cortisol is not only a stress hormone but is also part of your circadian rhythm (day and night rhythm).
- Consciously look at the sky and towards the sun when the sun rises for the same reason as the previous tip.
Regular exercise is a powerful remedy for depression. It increases our production of endorphins (that satisfied feeling you have right after a solid workout, for example).
- Again the daily walk! Bonus points if you have a dog ????
- If you don’t feel like a workout or jogging, do yoga or pilates.
- Play with your dog or cat if you have one.
Looking for hobbies and fun:
Hobbies can help reduce stress and stimulate positive emotions.
- Teach your dog or cat new things.
- Start a new hobby.
- Resume an old hobby.
- Learn new things, such as photography or painting.
Friends and nice people
Stay in touch with friends and family, even if you may have a tendency to withdraw during difficult seasons.
- Plan a fun activity with friends or family on a regular basis.
- Make sure you always have something to look forward to.
- Occasionally go to dinner with your partner, friends and family.
Mindfulness & relaxation techniques:
This not only helps reduce your stress but also improves your mood and increases your inner resilience.
- Meditation: for example, focus on the spot between your nose and lips where you feel your exhalation, let thoughts pass you by and do this for at least 10 or 15 minutes. Bonus points if you can do this for 30 minutes.
- Breathing exercises: breathe in on 4 counts, hold for 4 counts, exhale on 4 counts, hold for 4 counts and breathe in again.
Your diet contains so many nutrients and gives so many excipients to your body. With every bite you do, you give information to your body. It really is a piece of self-love to do this well.
- Eat as little manufactured food as possible. Read: everything that has a lot of ingredients on the packaging. The first ingredient on the list is the most in it, the last ingredient is the least in it. Your body doesn’t recognize what you don’t recognize (let alone pronounce!).
- Eat as much natural food as possible. Everything that has lived, from fruit and vegetables to fish and meat, is good.
- Your body does not want refined sugar, because this is pro-inflammatory and this really does not benefit your body.
- Make sure your blood sugar level becomes stable. You can ask my help for this if you don’t know how to do it.
Your life doesn’t end in December. Thankfully! That means you can use fall and winter to focus on your goals.
- Set goals for yourself by the Christmas holidays (be realistic, otherwise it won’t happen in such a short period of time)
- Set goals in 6 months
- Set goals in a year. What do you want to achieve by October 18, 2024?
Therapy and coaching:
The end of the year is a fantastic time to work on yourself and receive therapy and coaching. Not only do you have extra human contact with someone who supports, motivates and inspires you, but you also immediately have an accountability partner so that the chance that you achieve your inspiring goals is much greater.
Even if you feel completely despondent, hopeless and helpless, therapy is ideal at this time.
Your SDD may be triggered by underlying emotional blockages and feelings may arise that lead you to believe that:
- You are all alone,
- No one thinks of you,
- You are hopeless and not enough,
- Real and lasting happiness is not available for you,
- You will never achieve your dreams and goals,
How can I help you with that?
With the Being Unstoppable trajectory we tackle the cause and solve the problem, whether this is about emotional binge eating, ending up in the same patterns over and over again, or if you feel that something in you is holding you back from achieving your goals.
When we have found and solved the cause, we work on the practical where we create new habits.
Intuition also plays a major role. You learn to recognize your intuition and listen to it, so you will better recognize what you really need and you will stand in your way less.
If you would like to receive my guidance, please send me an email, call me on +32 495 18 36 68 or book an curiosity call immediately.