Like many, I’ve got SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). This basically means that when it gets darker, colder, and wetter, I get more depressed. When the sun is out and it is nicely warm, I get less depressed. This is of course a massive generalisation, but this sums it up.
Last winter was a bit difficult, depression-wise. This is especially because it was the first winter I had where I hadn’t recently visited Bermuda, my home country. I think I’m hit especially hard by SAD because I spent my first 19 years in Bermuda, surrounded by blue skies all year long. The UK winters are very bleak in comparison. However, this winter I am determined that I will not sink quite so low!
I recently got my hands on a SAD lamp which is a light that mimics natural daylight. Not only is it amazing for selfies and photographs (an unexpected perk), but it basically makes up for the lack of natural daylight that we’ve been having here in the UK. (It is also great fun to switch it on and yell ‘FUCK OFF DEPRESSION’ which I have been known to do every so often. Anything to make mental illness a bit more comedic, in my opinion. I’m thinking of sticking googly eyes on it, as well.)
While it isn’t the most attractive of things to look at, I do think that it has been helping. I was lucky enough to get one for free – if you’re in the UK, I don’t know if you can get one on the NHS. If not, you can get them on Amazon or such places. I’m not sure why I was so resistant to getting a SAD lamp for so long – light therapy is the recommended way to deal with SAD, after all!
I’ve also been making a conscious effort to get outside every day, even if only for ten minutes whilst I’m walking to and from the shops. I’m not saying that this will cure my depression, but I think that making myself get out of the house has been good for my mental health, especially when I go for a long walk. This may become a little less effective the greyer it gets over here, but… we’ll see how it goes!
Do you have any experiences with SAD? Any tips? Let me know!