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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Sunday, February 05, 2023
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Battling the blues

You know that feeling when the cold weather first begins to set in? It looks a little like this: The leaves start to change color, the days get shorter and shorter and you can no longer step outside in a t-shirt. For some, their favorite part of the year is just around the corner, but for others, this is not quite the case.

Maybe it’s the knowledge that summer has come and gone yet again, or the fact that grabbing a towel and heading to the dock to tan by Memorial Union will no longer be in question. Ice cream being out of season could definitely take a toll on one's mental health. Whatever it may be, seasonal depression can get the best of us.

There is a scientific reason to validate these feelings. Scientists have found that those with seasonal depression, or Seasonal Affective Disorder, all share one thing in common. This variable is a sensitivity to the scarcity of light, especially during the morning hours. Waking up to a bleak, dark scene outside of your window and having the sun set before you eat dinner can be tough. Trust me, I get it.

As fall creeps up on us and the lengthy winter (thanks, Wisconsin!) approaches, one should be equipped with the necessary tools to combat this unfortunate, yet inevitable state of mind. 

First, it’s okay to mourn the loss of summer, just don’t get too carried away. A look through the ol’ camera roll every once in a while won’t hurt. You can appreciate the past without dwelling on it.

The logical solution would be to get outside, especially when sunlight is present, as often as possible. After all, scientists say less sunlight correlates with increased winter blues

Staying on top of things could help you avoid one subgroup of winter depression, our good friend the “Sunday Scaries.” There’s nothing like waking up midday on a Sunday with nothing but endless homework waiting for you. So, keep an agenda of some sort — online or physical — and break your work up throughout the week. Your future self will thank you.

Finally, despite an initial reluctance, it might be helpful to embrace the cold. Make some tea, throw on your favorite fall TV show or pop your headphones in and listen to some winter tunes. It doesn’t have to be your favorite season, but you don’t need to hold a grudge against winter. 

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