In some cases, summer depression can be linked to biological causes. But for many others, common stressors associated with summer months can lead to despair and stress. If your health, relationships and every day activities are suffering because of unhappiness, here are some useful tips to beat the summer blues.
Make Diet and Exercise a Priority
As summer temperatures soar and layers of clothing are shed, it’s not uncommon for people – men and women – to become anxious and depressed. Healthy lifestyle choices were never an issue during the winter months when travel was limited and comfort foods were a staple on the menu. Now that summer has arrived, take advantage of opportunities to engage in outdoor activities.
Regular physical exercise keeps endorphin levels high, which promotes happiness, and you may even shed a few pounds. Tip: don’t over do it. Moderate exercise is the key to success, as overdoing it will only lead to burn out. Couple daily exercise with a smart menu plan, and in no time you’ll look and feel great, giving summer depression a long deserved back seat.
Give Yourself Permission to Say No
Whether it’s the annual Memorial day picnic with the family, Friday night outdoor concerts or the 4th of July BBQ that you haven’t missed in a decade, summer is filled with social obligations, which let’s face it, can be overwhelming. Give yourself permission to politely pass on a few that you truly don’t want to attend. Opting out on accession is completely acceptable and a smart way to take control of your time, finances and emotional well-being. Besides, the break you take now will leave you with more energy and motivation to attend the next event.
Recognize When You Need Help
It’s not realistic to expect your mood to be uplifted and jovial all the time. However, when depression, stress or anxiety is having a negative impact on your life, it may be time to take a closer look. What types of changes should you be on the lookout for? A sudden decrease in appetite, weight loss or gain and heightened anxiety may be a sign that your summer blues should be taken seriously.
Professional family counseling services can help identify summer triggers that lead to depression, helping you more effectively manage symptoms before they spiral out of control. Talking to an expert is a smart, practical way to attack summer depression, and a healthy strategy for avoiding more serious health complications.
When summer blues leave you struggling with depression or stress, know that you are not alone. Men and women who try to do and be everything to everyone often find themselves overwhelmed, distraught and unhappy as the weather warms. Use the temperature to your advantage by getting out and getting active, trim the social schedule without guilt and recognize when to use the guidance and expertise of a professional.