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  • Alainnah Knight

How To Be Proactive To Prevent The Winter Scaries (or in other words: Seasonal Affective Disorder)

There are so many of us that start to get a lil nervous when we feel fall and winter creeping around the corner. The weather gets a bit colder, the days get a bit shorter, and the amount of sunlight we receive every day decreases. There has been quite a theme this week around us of seeing this change happening and being a bit scared of becoming sad or low-motivation during the winter season. The awareness of this is a beautiful thing, let's utilize this awareness of how the seasons changing impacts our wellbeing to be proactive about preventing the winter scaries. When we bring awareness to our experience with the winter scaries (or Seasonal Affective Disorder), we can proactively implement healthy coping mechanisms and lifestyle shifts.

A black dog with orange boots on jumping up from the snow in a parking lot with the sun setting behind
Ferguson being very scared of the snow

If you know that during the fall and winter months, your mood begins to shift a bit, maybe it's a good time to start being proactive with your coping mechanisms and lifestyle. Here are a few different ways on how to prevent the winter scaries (or Seasonal Affective Disorder).

Five Ways to Be Proactive To Prevent The Winter Scaries (Seasonal Affective Disorder):

1. Prioritize Outside Time (Even Just 15 Minutes!)

There are so so so many benefits to spending time outside. With the days much shorter in the winter time (and colder) there can be many barriers to spending as much time outside as you did in the summer months. How can you intentionally prioritize outside time into your schedule as the seasons shift? How does that look in your schedule now? How will you hold yourself accountable to maintain this throughout the shift in seasons?

2. Stay Connected

It can be very easy to begin to isolate ourselves as the sadness creeps in. Staying connected and communicating how the season may impact you with those that are in your life can be a wonderful way to stay proactive against the winter scaries. How are you maintaining those relationships now? How can you hold each other accountable in connection?

3. Make A Schedule

When we have a schedule we are more likely to stick to the boundaries we have with ourselves. Making a schedule can help us stick to our sleep schedules, fueling our body, engaging in the things we love, and making sure we are holding ourself accountable. Do you have a schedule now? What would it look like to implement a schedule? How do you hold yourself accountable?

4. Fuel Your Mind, Body, & Spirit

It is so important that you take care of yourself and listen to what your body needs. Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule, fueling your body, and spending time reflecting and connecting with self are habits and lifestyle shifts you can begin now to be proactive against the winter scaries. Are there any areas for improvement? Are there any new healthy habits you can begin implementing now?

5. See a Therapist!

Having the space to explore, process, and find coping mechanisms can be so so helpful for those of us that are a little more impacted by the shift in seasons. Reaching out to a therapist now is a fabulous way to be proactive against the winter scaries!

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