Depression – Beating the Winter Blahs

February 11, 2007 by  
Filed under DEPRESSION

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By Yvonne Perry

It’s winter and I hate cold weather. I know only one person who likes cold temperatures and she moved back to Boston after nearly suffocating in Nashville last summer. Not, me. I can take the humidity and high temperatures. Give me summer any day!

I’ve learned to deal with winter blahs in the most unique ways. I’ll share some tips with you in case you are struggling too.

Color: bright happy colors influence our mood more than you might realize. I’ve found that wearing bright colors or having them around me helps cheer me up. For the past three years my office, where I spend most of my days, were lime green and cobalt blue. With a punch of hot pink, neon yellow and primary red, I rarely felt down. I was being treated for mania, but that is a common side-effect of color overload.

Light: The days are longer, the sun is not as bright and neither is my mood. I have a large window in my office that provides some natural sunlight. I also use an over head light with three 60-watt bulbs; there’s a 75-watt bulb in a free-standing lamp, plus I have a 3-way lamp for mood lighting. I figure an electric bill is cheaper than psychotherapy.

Aromatherapy: Smell is associated with memories and can affect the olfactory nerves in your brain. I have an apothecary of essential oils for just about anything that ails me. I mixed a formula for lifting my spirits and I wear it whenever I feel down. I may smell like a French whore with arthritis but I’m not depressed!

Exercise: Moving your body moves energy. The winter blahs are really just an energy shift as our planet moves farther from the sun in its orbit. I used to excuse myself from exercising in the winter because it is too cold to get outside and do my usual walking routine. I remedied that by purchasing an elliptical trainer to use indoors. I tried it for five minutes, broke out into a sweat and went back to my office vowing not to do that again. When I redecorated other parts of my house, the exercise machine ended up in my office where its arms handily hold my closet door open.

Change your appearance: Sometimes I just get tired of my looks and this normally happens in winter. I took myself out for a new hair style last week. I told the stylist I wanted something really perky that would be a drastic change from the boring hair-do I had been sporting. Now that I look like a punk rocker, my winter blahs have abated.

Change of environment: I couldn’t afford to take a tropical vacation so I opted to redecorate my home. I had been watching those decorating shows on HGTV (what else is there to do in winter?) and decided my home needed sprucing up. So far I’ve painted sixteen walls, a closet and four ceilings. My body will recover eventually. By the way, painting utilizes a lot of the tips I’m sharing with you. It includes exercise, change of environment, color, smell (odor), and a those splotches on my clothes created a new look for me.

I encourage you to try these recommendations, I’m sure your winter will be brighter, more colorful, fun and if nothing else, it will be interesting!

Yvonne Perry is a freelance writer and editor who assists clients with any type of writing project. Yvonne is available to assist your with telling your story or writing your book. Her podcast Writers in the Sky is filled with information about the craft and business of writing. See for more information about her writing services, books, newsletter, podcast and blog.

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