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Winter Time Blues: Seasonal Affective Disorder

Have you ever heard someone say, “I feel the same way it looks outside” as it pours down rain and gloomy clouds cover the sky? If you are like me and hate the cold weather and rain then maybe this time of year isn’t your happiest. Some of us only feel a little gloomy, while others are severely depressed due to a depression disorder and it’s important to know the difference. Even though the weather may be gloomy and influence our moods, it doesn’t have to control them.

According to MSN.com, researchers have found that 10 to 20% of Americans suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD. This disorder has been linked to the cold winter months when the sun is out for shorter periods of time and warm weather is nowhere to be seen. Although SAD can be genetic, there are things you can do to prevent becoming depressed and stay in a general happy mood during the winter season.

It may be cliché, but smile; it’s contagious! Smiling is good for you and it’s good for those around you. Try it now, as you read this sentence, begin to smile. Not a fake smile, a true and genuine smile. Smile as you read the rest of this article and I guarantee you will be in a better mood.

Exercising is one of the best cures for a gloomy mood. Although it may take a little motivation to begin working out, once you start moving, your body will instantly begin to feel better. I’m not talking about an excruciating workout, but raising your heart rate with a simple jog or a little yoga will give your body the endorphins it needs to put you in a happy state of mind.

Music has the power to heal all. Think about it... when you’re at a party being the superstar you are, the music seems to take over your body and you want to dance. Music is emotional and listening to high energy, pumped up, sexy, happy music can help put you in a happy place. Have caution: it’s probably a good idea to stay away from the Adele section of your iTunes if you are going to go through music therapy.

Last but not least, do something positive. Whether it is for you or for another person, making positive decisions and actions can put you in a good mood. Volunteer with kids, help out at a local animal shelter, or help feed the homeless; anything that will make you and whomever you are helping feel good. Thinking positively instead of focusing on the negative will give you a better outlook on your entire day, leaving you less likely to stay in a slump of depression.

By: Olivia Lewis | Image: Source

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