With the clocks now firmly changed back and the shorter days creeping in, many of us are now preparing to settle into the winter slog working from home. This year has thrown us a lot of troubles, added stress and anxieties, what with the coronavirus continuing to rage on throughout the coming winter months, and the thought of another six months stuck inside is terrifying.
The winter brings with it a lot of excitement, from the build up to Christmas to seeing out the New Year with close friends and loved ones, but for many, it also means the arrival of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) – also known as ‘winter depression’, a type of depression that’s brought on due to the changing seasonal patterns.
Like many mental health conditions, SAD is often written off and not taken seriously. It’s typically brought on with the changing of temperature, weather and shorter days. Check the NHS website for full details on what SAD is, the symptoms and how to get help from your GP.
There are a few common ways you can help tackle SAD at home. We’ve rounded up six ways commonly through to help combat Seasonal Affective Disorder, from the common SAD lamp to investing in some energy producing plants.
Invest in a SAD lamp
Sunlight is proven to help boost your energy levels and mood, and anyone who lives in the UK knows that come winter time we’re rarely graced with the luxury, bar a few sporadic days. Help boost your mood and stay productive while working from home by investing in a SAD lamp.
These aren’t your typical desk lamp numbers, a SAD lamp helps to replicate the effects of sunlight. Just like the sun, these lamps are designed to help trigger the release of serotonin, known as the feel-good hormone.
Lumie is the go-to brand when it comes to SAD lamps, and they’ve been developing light therapy products for over 25 years. We love their free-standing desk lamp, that’s dimmable meaning you can chop and change the amount of light you want to suit your work set-up. They also do a great slim shield-type lamp, which can be rotated portrait or landscape, and provides 2,500 lux at a comfortable and practical distance while you work.
Swap to a wake-up light alarm clock
Begin your day the right way with a wake-up light alarm clock. These are designed to wake you up with natural sunlight and alarm sound, helping to reset your internal clock and sleeping pattern, while also improving your energy and wellbeing. A whole lot better than hearing your iPhone blurt out the monotone sound while it’s still pitch black outside.
Some of these clocks also come with a setting that’ll help you drift off to sleep at night too, including the Philips edition, which will drift you off to sleep with a dimming sunset and sounds. It’s coloured sunrise too is a nice added effect.
They’re also great if you’ve got shutters, blinds or curtains that let little light in too.
Journal everything down
You’ve probably heard every wellness guru, influencer and activist harp on about the power of writing down your feelings, but it really does help.
Whether it’s writing down your thoughts or charting your wellness, remember to take five minutes out of your day to reflect on how you’re doing and what you’re feeling in that moment.
Papier always has a beautiful selection of journals dedicated to wellness, helping you to keep track of your highs and lows.
Set the mood with a fragrance
When you’re working from home, it’s hugely important to switch off at the end of a long day. You can do this multiple ways, from as easy as running a warming bath to soak your aching muscles or simply packing away your ‘work station’ from the dining table. For us, it’s creating a homely area, and that means popping on our electronic oil diffuser that’ll help transform your space with uplifting energy and fragrances.
There are hundreds of oil diffusers out there but we love The White Company’s thanks to its natural ceramic design. Choose your favourite scent and feel instantly calmer and re-energised.
Top up your vitamin D levels
With less sunlight comes less vitamin D. This handy vitamin is responsible for keeping your health in check, whether that’s bone strength, brain function or helping our immune system.
An easy way to introduce vitamin D into your body is by taking supplements. Both Holland and Barrett and Planet Organic have a wide range of Vitamin D supplements, depending on the strength and amount you are looking for. Vitamin D spray is highly effective too, and is said to have a higher absorption rate.
Pack in the vitamin with Moju’s delicious, yet energising shots. Think punchy juices that are designed to help boost your diet in a whole new way.
Learn more about how to up your vitamin D levels here.
Litter your house with plants
Certain plants are known for producing mood boosting properties, with many helping to purify the air and surviving on little water.
We love a classic Peace Lily thanks to its air purifying qualities. Plus, according to PATCH, it’s even considered an ‘aura purifier’ in the Chinese art of feng shui.
Earlier this year we compiled a list of the best plants to suit your houses needs. Take a look at it here.