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Fall is such a beautiful season. The sunshine, breezes, and bright colors make why it’s the most common favorite season of people quite obvious.  Its so easy to be happy when you walk outside in fall. The sky is so blue, the changing leaves so bright… people are walking around fully clothed again, in warm snuggly clothes. It seems perfect.  I like it greatly, but lately it’s been making me a little bit nervous. Allow me to explain.
As days grow shorter and colder, and winter clouds pop in for visits, some people  start to feel a little sad or lonely due to a little phenomenon known Seasonal Depression or Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.). It can take place during change of any season, but winter seems to be the most common time.  Explained simply, S.A.D. is a condition that happens at a consistent time each year, and can be diagnosed by symptoms ranging from emotional (i.e. depressed, lonely, moody, or anti-social) to physical (i.e. nausea, weight change, or lack of energy.)
Let me reassure anyone dealing with this. Feeling how you do doesn’t mean you’re a drama queen, weak, or pathetic.  However, who wants waste such a gorgeous time of year being anxious about getting depressed?!
There ARE things you can do to help lessen symptoms so you can feel normal.
  1. Keep things Sunny.  Keep daylight in your home by installing daylight light bulbs.  When you buy lightbulbs at a hardware store they are generally marked with a “kelvin” measurement. Soft white bulbs are a classic choice for households, but daylight bulbs (between 5000 and 6000 kelvin) keep the happy sunlight look in your home even after dark. This was my first step, and it has really helped.
  2. Let There be Light…and Air.  We all have things we need to do and can’t always go for walks when it’s nice out, so open the nearest window. You know that crisp, fall-smelling air will do wonders for your mood. If its cold out just open the blinds  real daylight is even better than lightbulb daylight.
  3. Call for Back Up.  Spend time with friends and family doing fun things.  Bake some cookies, have a movie night, or build a camp fire. Whatever you can handle. You don’t need to be alone. If you feel things are more serious than simple company can fix, please seek help from a counselor. Nobody will judge you for it. If somebody does, ignore them. You’ll be glad you did when you start to feel alive again.
Please don’t look at this lovely season and become anxious about what is to come. Everything will be alright. You are smart enough to take care of yourself, and people around you want to help too.
Keep your chin up towards heaven, and have a wonderful fall!
Beth
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