grayscale photo of tree on a snow covered field

The Winter Blues or Something More?

How are you feeling? Today is Bell Let’s Talk Day. So let’s talk.

How are you doing? Is everything okay? Or are you struggling a little bit (or a lot) right now?

According to the Canadian Mental Health Association 15% of folks suffer from the winter blues. If you have the winter blues you might find that you are needing more sleep, craving more comfort foods, or feeling unmotivated and just want to hang out on the couch and chill with the TV.

The winter blues are different than seasonal affective disorder (SAD) which affects 2-3% of Canada’s population. SAD is a regularly occurring depression that impact’s one’s daily life.

Almost year into the Covid-19 pandemic our current circumstances are having an impact on people’s mental health. This summer one in 10 Canadians polled said Covid-19 has negatively affected their mental health. People are feeling anxious and depressed.

It’s always a good idea to reach out and talk to someone when you are struggling. Family or friends might be one option to turn to. You can also visit the Government of Canada website to find resources for help

If you think it is the winter blues some tips from the Canadian Mental Health Association include

  1. Getting outside for some daylight and keeping curtains open while inside. The natural light can help boost your mood
  2. Sticking to a normal sleep schedule as much as possible. Over-sleeping can actually make symptoms worse.
  3. Be kind to yourself and give yourself credit for how great you’re doing.
  4. Get some physical activity. If it seems difficult to get moving start small with a short walk.

One strategy I have started using is I set the alarm on my phone with a soothing ringtone for twice a day.

When the alarm goes I pause and become AWARE of how I am doing. I check in body, mind and soul. Then I make a choice to ACCEPT how I am feeling in that moment- no matter what. It is what it is. Finally, I set an INTENTION on how I want to feel. Then I let it go and get back to what I was doing.

This whole process takes less than a minute but I have found it helpful to have these little check-ins a couple times a day.

Hopefully, you have are having a wonderful day, but if you find yourself struggling never hesitate to send a message and we can chat.

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