- About Us
Is the change in weather also changing your mood? | Speaking Pink
The last few months have been an unexpected treat—sunshine and warmth have been abundant.
We’ve all felt grateful for some of the best weather we’ve known in years. But within past weeks, we’ve sensed a change. The air, once warm and easy, now has a bite. The sun is rising later in the morning, making it just a little harder to begin the day. And as the sun sets earlier these days, we are all reminded that the cozy chill of a new season has officially begun.
For some, the days of deep fall are a celebrated time of enjoying the traditions of the season—gatherings and activities in the comfort of the indoors, warmer expressions of fashion, flavorful autumn cuisine, and welcoming retreats of cozy hibernation. For others, the change in weather brings great challenge. In this shift of weather, many notice the approaching presence of depressive periods—for themselves, within an intimate relationship, or for their family.
Emotional lows or bouts of depression may correlate specifically to these seasonal changes. Do any of these experiences sound familiar or more intense than usual: a sense of sadness or depressed mood, lethargy or lack of energy, loss of interest or pleasure, weight gain or loss, excessive tiredness? If so, you aren’t alone. Weather changes often create an emotional climate where previous depressive experiences (or an onset of depression) can become more noticeable and/or difficult to overcome.
While life is marked by changes in our emotional condition, there are times when it may be especially challenging to move beyond unwanted ways of feeling—particularly during colder, grayer seasons. If this resonates with you, it may be timely to join with others who can support efforts to combat depressive experiences and help foster ways more preferable to you. In addition to supportive relationships, seeking help from a physician or therapist may also be beneficial.
Aspiring to minimize or prevent potential depression this season, I encourage you to be intentional about your lifestyle this fall. Create healthy diet and exercise routines that maximize your body’s wellbeing. Indulge in the beauty of this season—enjoying rituals of fall activities and seasonal produce or foods, cultivate relationships fulfilling emotional needs in your life, and participate in activities and interests within our community. And, challenge your family to invest in relationships and activities most significant to you. Let go of obligations that often leave us exhausted and vulnerable to sadness and depression.
In honor of those rejoicing in the season as well as those who find this time to be emotionally tender, these days offer a time of invitation for us all—It’s in transition we are invited to embrace and live from the uniqueness that only this current season can bring.
Could it be this season might become a time of extraordinary living you would long to return to when the weather changes yet again? You might just be surprised. For additional information and/or suggestions to decrease depression, visit www.nmha.org.
Shannon West is the owner of Speaking Pink, a therapy practice for teenage girls and twenties women. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.