Winter Blues-SAD

Having the winter blues is hard enough without being a grieving widow.  We widows rely on the sun’s bright rays to help keep our spirits up.  That’s why when Fall and Winter arrive, with their short days and long nights, our grief can take a downward turn.

If you notice feeling even more depressed, plus eating and sleeping a lot during the day, your grief may be turning into a type of depression called “Seasonal Affective Disorder” (SAD).

The National Mental Health Association says that mild depression maybe helped by an hour long walk in sunlight or two and a half hours under a bright artificial light.  Some widows have found that daily light therapy can be as safe and effective as antidepressants.  It also helps to eat plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables and high quality proteins, such as fish.

Breathing exercises cost nothing, but do so much more than just relaxing your stress levels.  They are linked to both heart health and longevity.  Simply set aside 15 minutes to sit quietly with your eyes closed, your belly should expand with each inhalation and contract with each exhalation.  Now for 15 minutes try breathing by inhaling for four counts and exhaling for eight.

Daily meditation can reduce anxiety so you are able to live in the moment and enjoy your family and friends.  To get started, check out mindfulness apps, like “Headspace” or “Calm” for guided meditation options.  If sitting still isn’t for you, try dance meditation for a more active way to decompress.

When you’re feeling tense and on edge, try gently rocking on a swing, hammock or rocking chair.  Finnish research suggests that rocking will help you feel 65% calmer and happier in just five minutes.  Rocking puts your entire nervous system into a relaxed meditative state, plus it calms the anxiety center in your brain.

In a study in the journal, Health Psychology, researchers had volunteers take a survey on their Life Purpose.  Those who had a strong sense of life purpose were more open to making healthy changes.  That’s because they don’t relate to conflict and uncertainty like those that have no purpose in life.

As the days get shorter it also helps to spend some time every day to write about your emotions without judgment.  It always helps to boost your confidence by silencing your inner critic.

Doing these things will help slow down the winter blues so that your energy level will not get depleted.  They give you all these benefits at little or no cost, so why not try them out.

8 Responses

  1. Patti j
    | Reply

    Gm everyone. Again, a perfect email this morning. October 28 was the one year date that my husband Nick died. Leading up to it was extremely stressful & depressing. I spent the last months going to doctors checking out all my physical pain & symptoms (that I never had before). On the 28th my 3 sisters came to stay with me. We had a great time. Laughing, going through old photos, cooking & just having fun. I am feeling a lot better than I was. I do know the depression & sadness comes in waves, (& they are further apart) but at least I know I will get back up again. Now my worries are concentrated on the dreaded winter months & do I sell my house? Do I buy or rent? So I just pray about it…& I decided I will take this second year to research all options… and schedule some activities & projects for winter. I have to trust & have faith I’ll be ok. 🙏.
    ❤️ Patti j

  2. Cynthia meyer
    | Reply

    Thank you, reading this helps remind me that the simple things we can do makes us feel a little better.

  3. deborahusry
    | Reply

    I am barely three months into my grief, and honestly, the winter terrifies me. I will take this advice to heart.

  4. Heather
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    Good morning today is my birthday and I’m missing my husband so much he used to always make sure I had a good birthday he would take me to all the places I would get birthday coupons from free stuff yummy and sometimes it would last a week long and then he would always make sure we would go out to dinner for my birthday wether it would be just me and him or with our children and my mom he would make it so nice this year is the first year without him on my birthday and then we have holidays coming up and he always made sure we had the best thanksgiving dinners he pretty much cooked everything he was a chef so it was yummy we ll be going out this year for thanksgiving anyway I miss him so much sorry to down anybody with this post

  5. Theresa Holloway
    | Reply

    Good Afternoon, My husband passed on October 2, 2017. It has been four years and sometimes it seems as though it was yesterday. I miss him so much. We were married for 45 years. Our Anniversary was on November 4 and his birthday is November 11. How do I handle the sadness that comes sometimes often, God is my help and He strengthens me to carry on each day, one day at a time. I have one daughter who has been a tremendous blessing to me, with roses on our anniversary. I have to trust God to get through each day. When the tears ciome, I pray and cry and give it all to God. Loosing someone after so many years of marriage is not easy, and my final consolation is, God knows each of our days on this earth. He calls us to Himself when our days are over here. It is good to know that we will see our loved ones again when we have given our lives to live for Jesus Christ, He assures us that everything will be alright and He will protect, hold, comfort, and provide for us as He has promised in the Bible. Be encouraged in the Lord.

  6. Kim K Drost
    | Reply

    My husband passed away on October 27th 2021…
    I’m scared, my heart is broken, my mind is so foggy. .. I don’t know if I can do this.. I miss him so much. We have been married for 45 years and knew each for 5 before that.. he just turned 66.. we have so much more to do…and it’s gone… I think I can’t get anymore but then it starts again..

  7. Naomi Solscheid
    | Reply

    My beloved husband died on February 22, 2021. My heart is so broken. We did not have children & all relatives live a distance away. Winter is here and I dread the holidays. I feel so very very sad. Not sure how I get through each day. I am a Christian but it seems like God is so far away. We were married for 30 years.

  8. Theresa
    | Reply

    To Kim and Naomi, all I can say is, keep praying, trusting, and believing in God. No, it’s not an easy journey, but God has promised us that He will never leave us nor forsake us. It’s a day by day, sometimes very lonely journey and the tears just seem to flow, but God catches each year and gives us strength to endure, may God bless you.

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