Know your enemy
One in five Americans is feeling some kind of winter blues, according to psychiatrist Norman Rosenthal, a leading expert on the subject; the figure is even higher in the UK. In addition to low mood, common symptoms include fatigue, lack of energy, a desire for more sleep, sleepiness at work, and craving for sweets and pasta. More than 30 years ago, Rosenthal and his colleagues at the American National Institute of Mental Health named the most extreme form of seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Do not hang on to the terms
The only difference between winter blues and Now is the seriousness of the effects. "People with winter blue tend to cope with basic life requirements, albeit with difficulty," Rosenthal wrote, while those with Sorrow "suffer relationship and work problems as they withdraw from friends and loved ones, as energy flags and falters concentration; The same steps will help in both conditions, although the worst cases may require counseling, psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, or antidepressants.
Bring more light into your life
Take advantage of every bit of daylight, perhaps by taking a walk at lunchtime, open the curtains so wide that it will go from dawn to dusk, or replace your morning train journey with a bike ride. It may be worth investing in a bright box at the will of Lumie and Light Lightbox. Rosenthal recommends looking for a box that will extract at least 10,000 lux. There are portable versions.
Watch what you eat
You may crave pure sugar and white starch, but Rosenthal warns that they will only lead to more craving. "Carbohydrates that have less impact, such as unprocessed oats, legumes, almonds and nuts, are better, as are high-protein foods that help reduce sweet cravings."
Be active and fun
"Socializing is good for your mental health," the NHS says. "Make sure you stay in touch with the people you care about and accept any invitations to social events, even if you only go for a while." Exercise can also lift your mood.