Sitting in the Shadows

This weekend not only marks the Halloween festivities, but also the age old tradition of winding the clocks in a different way so as to gain/lose daylight. How do I remember? Spring forward, Fall back. So rejoice and dive into bed as we can snooze and dream through an extra hour in bed (or turn up an hour early to work), but be sure to moan and grumble as it means the sunlight will diminish and it’ll be back to the routine of going to and coming from work among streetlights with damp leaves pirouetting across rain streaked pavements (look out for the snails, they sure do crunch! Eek!).

For some of us, (me included) this is a heavenly idea of dark evening walks with empty streets and a thick smokey bonfire smog in the air before coming home to the flickering fireplace with a decorated hot chocolate and Eastenders on the tele box. For others, it’s the idea of hell where only the dream of migrating Down Under will suffice as the heavy darkness sits uncomfortably on the shoulders. But the latter isn’t something to ignore as you may well spiral down into a different strain of depression, Seasonal Affective Disorder or S.A.D.

Just like depression you may well feel tired, lethargic, full of fatigue, a bit more than down in the dumps and it may well harbour you into bed than feeling fit and healthy to want to jump out and get on with your day. It may even make you feel anxious, a sense of panic lying in the air or you might lose interest in normal everyday activities like eating or being social; you may even find negative ways to deal with this sudden change of mood by over indulging in food or drink. Having to cope with all these negative associations of life is numbing to the core and nothing short of debilitating when in the UK our dark periods will run through to next Spring in March and April.

Looking back, do you notice the signs and symptoms of winter blues? Or do you feel the heavy weight of of winter sitting on your mind, your chest and your heart? It’s nothing to be ashamed of and it isn’t something to be just be “coped with”. There are methods, techniques and treatments to get you through the dark days so you can blossom in the Spring just as the daffodils and tulips do.

From planning your patterns to incorporate more daylight into your routine to encouraging yourself to eat well and exercise, using a light lamp or seeking professional help for therapy or medication, there are plenty of ways to seek and give yourself support for this time of year. Below are some links on useful websites that will provide you with tips and tricks so you can be better prepared for the clocks going back this weekend.

Most of all, take care of yourself, seek whatever makes you comfortable and remember to speak up if you feel yourself spiraling down. There is never a need to be alone when you’re feeling low, something like S.A.D. affects more people than you might think.

NHS S.A.D. Guide

MIND Background, Self-Care, Stories & Treatment Options

S.A.D. Organisation (Inc. a guide to top light lamps on the market)

The Blurt Foundation Guide to Getting Through The Winter

Have a fantastic Halloween everyone, let’s ring in the Wiccan New Year with a (safe) bang!

Blessed be!

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P.S. don’t forget to order your #BuddyBox from the Blurt Foundation. November’s theme is ‘Woodland Walks’. Exciting times!

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