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  • Writer's pictureGraham Reynolds

Dealing with Anxiety about Changing Seasons

As the leaves change and the air turns crisp, many people eagerly anticipate the arrival of a new season. However, for others, the transition between seasons can bring about feelings of anxiety and unease. Seasonal changes can disrupt our routines, affect our moods, and even trigger a sense of uncertainty about what lies ahead. Here are some strategies for dealing with anxiety related to changing seasons.

Acknowledge Your Feelings

The first step in managing anxiety is to acknowledge your feelings. Mindfully noting that we are feeling anxious helps us to create space to have that anxiety and for it to be okay. It's perfectly acceptable to feel anxious or uneasy about transitions; these emotions are perfectly normal. By recognizing and accepting your feelings, you can begin to address them more effectively.

Understand Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

One common source of stress during seasonal transitions is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD is a type of mood disorder that occurs at specific times of the year, usually during fall and winter when daylight hours are shorter. Understanding that your anxiety might be related to SAD can help you seek appropriate treatment and support.

Maintain a Consistent Routine

Seasonal changes can disrupt daily routines, leading to feelings of instability. To combat this, try to maintain a consistent daily schedule as much as possible. Regular sleep patterns, mealtimes, and exercise routines can help stabilize your mood and reduce anxiety.

Embrace the Positive Aspects

Rather than focusing solely on the negatives, try to embrace the positive aspects of the changing seasons. Each season brings unique opportunities and experiences. For instance, fall offers vibrant foliage, cozy sweaters, and pumpkin spice lattes, while spring brings blooming flowers and longer daylight hours. By focusing on the beauty and pleasures each season brings, you can shift your perspective and reduce anxiety. If you are like me, you may struggle with “bad” weather, but no matter how we feel about it – the weather will be the weather. How we choose to respond is somewhat within our control.

Practice Mindfulness and Relaxation Techniques

Mindfulness and relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing exercises, meditation, and yoga, can be invaluable tools for managing anxiety. These practices can help you stay grounded in the present moment and alleviate worries about the future or past.

Seek Social Support

Don't hesitate to lean on your support network during seasonal transitions. Talking to friends or family members about your anxiety can provide emotional relief. You might find that others share your feelings and can offer guidance or simply lend a listening ear.

Light Therapy

For those who experience SAD, light therapy can be an effective treatment option. Light boxes mimic natural sunlight and can help regulate your body's internal clock, potentially reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety associated with seasonal changes. Consult a healthcare professional before starting light therapy.



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