Seasonal Affective Disorder, commonly known as SAD, affects up to three in 100 people in the UK at some point in their life. It can cause you to feel low at the same time every year, usually around autumn and winter when there is less sunlight.
If you’re starting to feel low now that summer is over, keep reading as we’re sharing eight tips for protecting your wellbeing this season.
- Get your dose of daylight
As the days get shorter, it can feel like we’re heading to and leaving work in the dark which can take a toll on our mental health. Try and find time to get some sunlight, even if it’s a 20 minute walk at lunch time.
- Exercise regularly
Physical activity is a tried and tested way to decrease symptoms of depression and anxiety. It releases feel good endorphins, plus it’s a great stress buster. Bonus points if you can exercise outside!
- Work in natural light
If you can, try and position your desk by a window to expose yourself to as much sunlight as possible.
- Eat a healthy and balanced diet
Whilst pizza and chips on the sofa can feel comforting, junk food can actually make our mood worse. That’s not to say you can’t enjoy a pizza every so often, but make sure you’re getting your greens, pulses, beans and fruits in too!
- Embrace autumn
Find the pleasures in the short days and chilly weather. Light some candles, make a cup of tea and curl up under a cosy blanket.
- Schedule in self care
Make some time to do something completely for yourself whether that’s taking a bubble bath, going for a massage, watching your favourite film or reading a book.
- Get your 8 hours of sleep
When we’re sleep deprived we find it harder to deal with daily stresses which can lead to mental health problems like anxiety and depression. Make sure you’re getting between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night. If you’re struggling to sleep, try doing some meditation and reading before bed, having a calming chamomile tea and banning screens for at least an hour before bedtime!
- Make plans with friends and family
Social Wellness is really important to your overall wellbeing, so make you’re getting enough social interactions. Luckily, there are lots of fun things you can do with friends in autumn. Make a plan to visit a pumpkin patch, have a scary film marathon or grab a coffee and head out for a walk!
Learn more about protect your long term mental wellness in our book ‘8 Wise Ways To A Healthier Happier Mind’.