What are the Winter Blues & How to Keep them in Check

There is no denying it, our days are changing. Colder. Darker. Shorter.

The winter blues are, simply put, a change in mood associated with winter. 

It makes total sense why we would experience it when we look at our evolution and how we have been socialized.

Your brain wants to keep you alive, this is where your instincts come from. During winter these instincts include eating more and staying indoors.

To your primitive brain, winter means food scarcity and likely death if you step outside the cave and are not able to find shelter.

If you find yourself skipping the gym, avoiding the social plans and binge-ing episodes of the Office on Netflix on your sofa, you are not alone. 

Secondly, notice your conversation about winter. Complaining much? Conversation enters your subconscious brain, filling it with negativity. Add to this our traditions and expectations of family, friends, happiness, food, gifts, travel, etc. your to-do list just got a lot longer! 

Lastly, the darkness is impacting your serotonin and melatonin levels, confusing your body clock, sleep routine and energy levels.

Now we know why the winter blues exist, let’s look at what we can do about it!

  1. STOP JUDGING YOURSELF. Self criticism is holding you back, fueling your anxiety and draining your energy. Before taking positive action, you HAVE to let go of judgement.
  2. STOP LISTENING TO YOUR BRAIN.Your brain wants to eat more and stay indoors. You do not have to listen. Making decisions ahead of time and committing to them even when your brain tells you not to is a game changer. For winter and forever. 
  3. STOP COMPLAINING. It is tempting and easy, but be mindful that how you talk becomes a habit. The more you complain in one area of your life, the easier it is to complain in all areas.
  4. CREATE ROUTINE. The time you wake up, when or how you exercise, what you eat, etc. Often people are hesitant to change their routine for winter and end up doing NOTHING. If you cannot continue with your previous routine, create a new one. This can even be fun and an opportunity to try new things.
  5. BE SOCIAL. Your mental health is directly impacted by your social support. You can stay indoors with others OR you can enjoy seasonal things that are only available this time of year! It is never as bad once you get outside!
  6. FIND LIGHT. We know it is darker, plan for it! Whether it is going outside at lunch, or sitting by the window during the day, think about what you can do and implement it.
  7. GET OFFLINE.It is easy to sit at home swiping and scrolling, comparing your life to others’, feeling sorry for yourself, consumed in hours of media that is not serving you, and can feed your anxiety. What can you do without technology? Get creative! A new recipe? Art? Writing the book you have been thinking about for years? 

Be kind to yourself. Be kind to your anxiety. It is only trying to keep you alive after all. You get to teach your anxiety that you don’t need those same survival instincts anymore. Winter can be a time for you to blossom into creativity, new routine and growth.

If you want to find out more about how you can manage your anxiety for all the seasons, be sure to check out my podcast by clicking here .

Article Written by Vikki Louise Yaffe
Vikki is an Anxiety Expert and Coach, and Hosts the F*UCK Anxiety & Get Sh*t Done podcast available on iTunes.

Fighting the Winter Blues

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The cooler weather in the fall and winter means shorter days with less sunlight. For 14 percent of the US population, the season change triggers the winter blues. And for another 6 percent of Americans, the start of winter leads to full-blown Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). When it’s  dark outside when you wake up and go to sleep, your energy levels can take a hit. Spending more time indoors can also lead to spending more time in the kitchen and before you know it you’re eating more of the fall/holiday food than you intended, which for me (Daniel) can lead to carb comas and crashes. On top of more starches, smaller amounts of vitamin D from the sun can often introduce symptoms of depression and anxiety for the fall and winter months. However there is good news!! There are several options to treat the winter blues and SAD (exercise, journaling, light therapy, integrating new routines, etc.) Because mental health is so important to us, we want to share some of the ways that we manage these symptoms.

Exercise  

We know waking up early in the freezing cold and dark hours is not particularly inviting—especially when your warm bed is sooooo comfortable! But making time to sweat out toxins, increase serotonin levels and release endorphins is just as important in the winter as it is in the summer! Exercise helps to boost your mood and keeps those symptoms of depression and anxiety at bay. Finding 20 minutes just three times a week (outside in the sunshine to get vitamin D, if possible!) increases your energy levels and is one of the best things you can do for your mental health.

Socialize

Sharing your feelings and experiences with a trusted support system can help alleviate feelings of sadness or anxiety that often surface during this busy time of year. Trust me, you aren’t alone. Whether you’re caring for kids who seem to constantly be ill in the winter, struggling to meet deadlines for work or missing someone during the holidays who is dear to your heart, spending quality time with people who care about you can be a sure source of encouragement. Lots of people feel this way over the colder months so reach out and let somebody know how you feel- they may actually be holding on to the same feelings. If you’re honest with them, you may actually find yourself lifting their spirits and THAT my friend feels really good.

CBD

CBD is becoming more popular in the realm of natural treatments for seasonal anxiety and depression. According to a study done in 2018, Cannabidiol can have similar effects to antidepressants by increasing serotonin levels. We have found that the recommended daily serving of two Superseed Life cookies or brownies is enough to take the edge off and keep up our productivity levels. Try it here for 7 days!

Full schedules and daily responsibilities don’t stop as the weather cools down and the days get shorter. Like us, you might be juggling parenthood, work responsibilities and added pressures from the upcoming holidays. There is no shame in struggling with feelings of anxiety and depression, but not all coping mechanisms work the same for everyone. We are passionate about sharing what we have tried because we know what it feels like to be wondering where to start. Always reach out to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns! And head back here this Friday to hear more tips about routine and self-talk from anxiety coach and podcast host, Vicki Yaffe.

13Sep/19

Hello world!

Welcome to the official Superseed CBD blog! Here, we hope to share bits of information and encouragement, as well as stories about how Superseed CBD is changing lives!!! First things first… While research continues to improve and the health benefits of CBD become wider and clearer, one that we hold dearly and can personally vouch for is the positive effects of Superseed CBD on mental health. According to several studies between 2010 and 2015, aRead More…