So, this last month or so I’ve noticed a considerable drop in my mood; feeling low more frequently and being on some kind of permanent anxiety overdrive. With no obvious affecting factors, I was essentially left wondering: what the hell is wrong with me? But then it dawned on me – Seasonal Affective Disorder is a very real thing. And I’m guessing I’m not alone in experiencing it. I’m definitely no expert, but here’s some small things I’ve been doing to up my seasonal self care.
1. Get some day light
Yes, I know thats a lot easier said than done given that most of our (admittedly few) daylight hours are spent in lecture theatres. But its no excuse not to make the most of the time you do have, bundle up and get out! Light and sunshine are soo important in keeping your mood steady, so make the extra effort (now more than usual) to see some!
2. Hit the gym
Anyone who knows me knows I’m a big runner. Okay, so I’m no Jessica Ennis-Hill, but running is my way of reducing anxiety. But, with dark nights drawing in and an almost permanent rain cloud hovering over us, its starting to feel quite unsafe. So my solution? Hit the gym. You’ll get the same endorphins, minus the frostbite.
3. Get super organised
Since we were children, autumn has meant one thing: back to school. Whilst you might be conditioned by now to hate the thought of it, its worth seeing the positives. A new uni semester means a fresh start, a chance to really throw yourself into your studies – and a good excuse to splash out on some over priced but oh so tempting stationery.
4. Plan ahead
So, you can’t head outside in your shorts right now, but it never hurts to think ahead. One of my current favourite methods of seasonal self care is to plan out the holidays I have booked for summer. You can check out our tips for getting student friendly holiday prices here.
5. Embrace the season
Planning ahead doesn’t mean you should avoid the season you’re in altogether. Watch some scary movies, visit a pumkin patch or take your dog out on some scenic autumn walks. I know it can feel horrid, but autumn does have some good points!
6. Talk to someone
Saving the best until last, this is by far my most important tip. If you’re feeling low, its so so important that you reach out. Talk to your friends, your parents, a Uni counsellor, an NHS counsellor – drop me an email if you really want to. Just make sure you talk to somebody. I guarantee you’re not alone.
You might also like:
- Mental health and coronavirus: learning to go easy on yourself.
- It’s a ‘syndrome’ and other myths – a guide for University mentors
- 3 Things you don’t need to do whilst social distancing, and 3 things you probably should
- Tackling your dissertation: Chapters
- All the things you should read whilst you’re social distancing