Exploring ways to brighten your mind, body, and spirit
A grey looming abyss lurks outside my bedroom window. Is it dusk or dawn? It’s hard to tell just from looking outside. I haven’t seen the sun in days, maybe even weeks. Time does weird things when there is no light to manage my circadian rhythm. Winter has a way of bringing gloom.
Approximately 10 million people in the U.S. experience Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) every year, and millions more in countries in the northern hemisphere. SAD is linked to a biochemical imbalance in the brain prompted by shorter daylight hours and less sunlight in winter.
Historically, I have experienced a lack of motivation, tiredness, moodiness, and random tearful outbursts in winter. Throughout recent years I’m less and less affected by the ways of the weather, but having gone through it myself, I know that these times can be bleak, and I wanted to offer some light.
- Light Therapy Lamp.
My mother bought me one of these a couple of years ago. I sit in front of it as I eat my breakfast each morning. Sometimes I close my eyes and imagine the light filling me with warmth. This alone raises my mood. When used regularly, the light is supposed to replicate the sun, helping to regulate your sleep cycle, boost your energy, and help you to focus.
2. Upbeat Music.
Music is a powerful force! People, animals, and even water are affected by music. *It’s true. Look it up* The tone of music has a biological influence, and listening to positive, life-affirming music is a reliable way to boost our mood. We are what we consume, and listening to the right tunes can emit dopamine and serotonin, which elevate our disposition.
Not only that, music can encourage us to have fun! Move your body as you listen. Sway, jiggle, shake, jump around, DANCE! Depression tends to come with physical stagnation, and movement helps release it. Free your mind and your body, and watch as your mood shifts.
Midsection — Kaytranada
Electricity — Silk City
Shake it Out — Florence + The Machine