How To Cope With the Winter Blues ... - Carson Tahoe Health

How to cope with the seasons changing

Well-being check! 5% of the US population presents with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) during the winter months and physicians expect to see this number rise in 2020 as COVID-19 is spiking nationwide and people are more isolated physically than normal. This can be hard to navigate as the winter season brings many beloved holidays focused on gratitude, faith, and celebration. Here are some tips for when you’re not in the holiday spirit:

  • Find the light. We are so lucky to have 300 days of sun in our region! Step outside and take 10 of your deepest breaths. This calms the nervous system and regulates anxiety.
  • Spend a weekend cooking. Cook a big batch of soup or double a casserole to freeze so you have nourishing food for days you’re not up to cooking
  • Make plans. Whether it’s a weekly, bundled up driveway happy hour, a distanced bonfire, renting snowshoes at Galena Sports, or a road trip to warmer pastures, it’s important to have something to look forward to.
  • Form accountability groups. Form a group with family and friends to check in on each other on a rotating schedule so everyone feels connected.
  • There’s an app for that! Headspace is great for meditation, WindowSwap allows you to take a look out of someone else’s window in another state or even across the globe! Submit your window so others can see the beauty of our region from the safety of their home. Youper is an AI Emotional Health Assistant that helps people monitor and improve their mental health.
  • Identify what feeds your spirit. If it’s working out make sure you have cold weather workout gear or try free youtube workouts like FitnessBlender or Yoga with Adriene. Make time to journal or take a bath. Make time to video chat or call friends and neighbors. Make time to read or watch old comedies. Write letters and send pictures to family of fun memories. Frame those photos you’ve stuffed in a box. It will be different for everyone, but scheduling time to do the things we love can help us feel more like ourselves.