Why You Don’t Need Therapy To Cure Seasonal Depression
I can’t be the only one who has noticed that the world is a dismal place recently. Yes, it’s important to know what’s going on in the world, but when all the gloomy reading is combined with depression, the sadness skyrockets and all you want to do is watch Christmas movies in bed to cheer up. Which, unfortunately, is not productive to the hustle, nor will it ultimately raise your mood.
Maybe one explanation for all the bleak stories that with the advent of winter, 25% of adults are struck by cases of SAD, aka Seasonal Affective Disorder, and bitches be wallowing. SAD is also known as “lack of light disease”, as in the idea that being shrouded in dark and cold leads to predictable depression symptoms, like overeating, oversleeping, lack of energy, decreased productivity and enthusiasm, even “increased sensitivity to social rejection.” Yikes. Maybe this explains the “New Yorkers are a depressed, angry portion of the population” stereotype.
Thankfully, there are ways you can ward off SAD and keep your mood lifted without ever hitting the therapist’s couch. Here are the most effective methods.
Light therapy: Okay, so I kinda lied. If you are sad enough to warrant a trip to the doctor’s office, he might recommend light therapy to cure your blues. Basically, you’ll get a light visor or box that you have to wear over your eyes for 30 minutes every day. It tricks your mind into believing you’re being exposed to organic sunlight. You have to repeat the treatment until springtime, when there’s more natural light to go around.
Rethink your alarm clock: Rather than an alarm that wakes you up with a super loud, annoying pop song (which you are guaranteed to abhor after a few months) or that annoying ass iPhone signature beeping, you might want to consider waking up with a Dawn Simulator. The Dawn Simulator wakes you up by gradually increasing the amount of light in your bedroom in the morning, just like the real sun. Perfect for anyone without the optimal amount of windows in their home, or anyone who requires a more soothing wake up call, but not for anyone whose prone to hitting the snooze button.
Redecorate your room: If there’s one thing you learn from reading this, I hope it’s that you need to increase the amount of light in your life. If you’re so averse to doctors that you won’t even go in for a consultation to get light therapy, and if you’re too broke for a Dawn Simulator, you can always redo your room or apartment to maximize light levels. So invest in that art deco lamp from the flea market, or at least buy some bulbs with higher wattage, and keep them turned on all the time.
Take a vacation: Here’s a medical excuse to take a tropical vacation to a warmer climate. Breaking the stale daily grind to go somewhere without grey skies and weekly snowstorms can’t help but raise your mood. Also, people in warmer climates are (percentage) less likely to be effected by SAD, so there’s something about this luxurious cure that works.
Add nutmeg to your coffee: Did you know that some kids use large amounts of raw nutmeg to get high when they don’t have access to anything else? That’s because it acts as a brain stimulant, which peps you up and gets rid of the sleepys. A tiny teaspoon thrown into your tea or coffee in the morning will boost your energy levels and eliminate stress. Be careful not to overdo it, though, or you might be tripping for the next couple of hours.
Take Vitamin D: I have always subscribed to the school of thought that vitamins are kind of bullshit. But there has been a lot of research about the correlation between sun-provided vitamin D and depression. The results are mixed: no one really knows if lack of vitamin D causes depression, or if depressing leads to low levels of vitamin D, but taking an extra supplement can’t hurt.
Drink a power smoothie: Folic acid (aka vitamin B) is another vitamin that’s deficient in humans when we’re experiencing depression. That’s why it’s time to get your Miley Cyrus on and drink one of those dark green smoothies that’s so healthy it stains your entire mouth and probably your intestines green. Leafy green veggies have the highest concentration of vitamin B, ever, so throw the contents of your produce drawer into the blender and enjoy the happy-making effects.
Eat more yogurt: What is this most bland of foods doing on the list? Well, according to a new study, the taste of low fat vanilla yogurt provides an instant cure to anything that ails you. It has something to do with the bacteria in fermented foods, which sounds gross but is 100% natural.
Work it out: Everyone knows that exercise released endorphins in your brain and makes you happy. Side note, did you know that sex also releases endorphins? Anyway, if you can’t find anyone that’s up to your standards for doing the dirty, or if you have such bad gym aversion that the mere thought of a treadmill makes you break out in hives, add a little Future to your playlist and you won’t be able to resist running like you’re in a high budget action flick. Keep in mind that prolonged low-speed running is actually more beneficial for decreasing anxiety and depression than a shorter sprint.
Photo Via IX Daily