GTFO: Winter Blues

4750
winter blues wonderland

{Image by Herry Lawford}

rsz_gtfoblip

With more threats of snow on the horizon for some areas – I’m hoping my local ‘no-snow’ forecast remains as such in the next few days.  I’m sick of winter. Seriously.  The bitter cold weather, the cloudy days, the long nights with shorter days.  The snow, the snow, the snow.  The awful drivers who forget there are others on the road; especially when there’s a sheet of ice on the ground. No please proceed to approach 75MPH because that is not regarded as a safety hazard!  Oh you want to harass my car bumper? Go right ahead, because guess what? I’m on the right lane, the slow lane, and like Beyonce said, you need to go: to-the-left, to-the-left if you choose to risk your life.  But I digress.

That being said, I think we’re all experiencing some form of winter blues and we’re ready for sunshine and warmth.  For some it is more than winter blues, for six percent of the United States population it is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)1.  Something that is more than just winter blues; seasonal affective disorder is considered depression that occurs at a certain time of the year, usually winter.  It primarily affects more women than men, at a rate of 60-90%.  While considered to be related to temperature, it is actually correlated to daylight.  Lack of sunlight increases the body’s production of melatonin, a sleep regulator in the brain that can cause symptoms of depression.  While SAD is more prominent in the winter months, there is a summer version that occurs in places near the equator where summer reigns.  Let’s compare the variations between winter versus summer SAD:

winter blues attributes

Don’t let the cute-sy diagrams above fool you, it is a serious that disorder that affects lives.  Like Depression, SAD has the same symptoms including but not limited to:

  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Increased appetite with weight gain
  • Increased sleep
  • Less energy and ability to concentrate
  • Loss of interest in work or other activities
  • Sluggish movements
  • Social withdrawal
  • Unhappiness and irritability

If you or someone you know feel you may be suffering from SAD please seek assistance from a qualified healthcare professional.  Hang in there everyone – April is the month when these symptoms clear up and we’re almost there.  What I found the most interesting in my research is that summer SAD is linked to aggression – so next week I will be expanding on that topic.  So hope to see you here again next week.

How is this long winter affecting you and your family? Is there any upcoming threats for snow in your area? 

whyimcray signature

Share Means Care! ♥

 Want to be a smarter cookie? Subscribe below to receive stimulating brain content every week!



37 Comments
  • Amanda
    November 30, -0001 at 12:00 AM

    I have it so bad this year. I got so excited to drive without a coat on and the window down yesterday and then today… BAM – blizzard. 🙁

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 13, 2014 at 11:00 AM

      Damn sorry your area was hit with a blizzard!! We dodged it – I think it’s working its way North-Eastern sorta direction and we are south enough where it won’t impact us. Sorry you got jipped! We just had a thunderstorm and the temp is in the low 30’s – but it’ll go back to the 50’s this weekend. Hope your weather changes soon and no more snow! Stay warm Amanda 🙂 -Iva

      Reply
  • Tamara
    November 30, -0001 at 12:00 AM

    Ugh, we have a winter weather advisory tonight. Not a huge pouring of snow, but just general muckiness of rain and ice. Yay!? I kid.I don’t think I full out have SAD but usually by now I’m just so DONE with winter that it does make me itchy. I’m so sick of dry skin and my hair and my face in the mirror. And being freezing when I get out of the shower. Hate that!

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 13, 2014 at 11:02 AM

      At least no snow! 🙂 We got a bit of rain yesterday but not as much as I thought it was going to be. They made it out to be this big thunderstorm all big and bad – nope just a crazy amount of powerful wind that is still persisting. So we’re in a "wind advisory" – whatever bring on the spring! I hibernate – I know I don’t like to be out in the cold unless I have to so I don’t make any plans during the winter – unless its indoors and very sporadic. Ugh I agree!! I’m sick of dry skin and freezing!!! I can only blast the heat soo much and I’m killing lotion like crazy!! I have a problem: I’m addicted to lotion. 😛 Have a great one love stay warm!! -Iva

      Reply
  • Nicky
    March 13, 2014 at 1:37 AM

    We got snow today, but it wasn’t as much as was originally predicted so I guess that’s a small positive. After this winter I will NEVER complain about being hot again. I have always felt like winter lasts for ever and ever but I have never experienced a winter like the one we’ve had this year. Craziness, just craziness.

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 13, 2014 at 11:04 AM

      Ha, I say that every summer but I always complain about the humidity and the bugs and the heat. Can’t help it – I voice my opinion (sounds better than complaining). Yes I agree that this winter has been particularly long and harsh all around – I’m sure we still have it good compared to some places in the Midwest territory up North and places really North such as Canada- still, I reserve the right to "voice my opinion." 🙂 To spring! Have a great one Nicky 🙂 -Iva

      Reply
  • Jennifer Barbour
    March 13, 2014 at 11:38 AM

    We’re at the point where we are going stir crazy. Too much time in a dark house while it’s super cold out and the snow is just icy and dirty now so it’s not fun to play in. Yuck. Can’t wait for sun and the ability to open windows!

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 13, 2014 at 12:04 PM

      Ugh yes! You know what, to help me get through the dreaded darkness I decorated our balcony door with the Christmas lights and leave them on when we’re home. It has an automatic timer of 6 hours so it will shut off automatically. It brings me joy to see the perky lights 🙂 Until springs arrival, they’re staying! Have a great one Jennifer! -Iva

      Reply
  • Rachel G
    March 13, 2014 at 1:40 PM

    Hmm, this is definitely interesting. I know I experience bits of the winter blues, and it’s not my favorite season, but SAD is something entirely different, and doesn’t sound fun at all! I know I am solar powered–I have so much more energy when the days get longer and sunnier!

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 13, 2014 at 3:28 PM

      No it’s not Rachel! It’s not fun at all – and the summer one sounds HORRIBLE! However, quite rare. Lmao I love that – solar powered! Haha. I’m not – I’m sleep-powered, the more I sleep I get bouts of energy then crash for more sleep. 😀 I experience winter blues which is why I hibernate, preserves energy haha. 🙂 Hoping for sunnier, warmer times. 🙂 Have a great one Rachel! -Iva

      Reply
  • Ashley
    March 13, 2014 at 1:47 PM

    Wow, thanks for this post. I have a lot of friends that probably fall in this category. I’ve suffered/suffer from depression and it is not necessarily related to the weather; so I didn’t know much about this. I thought it’s connection to sunlight was interesting (and makes total sense). Cannot wait forward to next week.

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 13, 2014 at 3:46 PM

      Thank you so much Ashley! Glad you found this beneficial – I think while labels aren’t important, understanding what’s going on is. SO if your depression is unrelated to weather then you have generalized depression, SAD is seasonal. Hope you’re feeling OK and hang in there winter is almost over! 🙂 I appreciate you stopping by Ashley and talk with you soon! -Iva

      Reply
  • Lady Lilith
    March 14, 2014 at 1:01 AM

    I think we all know how you feel. The other day the weather was like summer and when I woke up this morning, I felt like I was in the middle of another snow storm.http://bloodcravephotography.blogspot.com

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 14, 2014 at 7:33 PM

      Precisely – Wednesday it was SOO nice here and then BOOM – winter again. Now we’re back in the 30’s. It’s gross. Now I’m seeing threats of snow this Sunday or Monday and I don’t appreciate it. Hmph. Have a great weekend Lady Lilith! -Iva

      Reply
  • Jennifer McCullough
    March 14, 2014 at 2:41 AM

    I’m sure I have SAD! I live in the Midwest and I am so happy in the summer and so not happy in the winter. I absolutely thrive in daylight even though I’m such a night owl that I’ve been called a vampire. LOL Go figure. I’ve thought about getting one of those full-spectrum lights that claim to help the symptoms of SAD. Do you know if they really work, Iva?

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 14, 2014 at 7:35 PM

      Lol I consider myself a night owl – I have high productivity during the late hours but that’s because I have daytime sleepiness disorder so I’m alert during the nighttime. I haven’t tried light therapy but studies have shown that it can be effective as long as you ensure full exposure – definitely would suggest reading up more on it since I have no personal experience. I just hibernate in the winters and that seems to help me enough. 🙂 Definitely worth looking into Jennifer!! Thanks for stopping by and talk with you soon, enjoy your weekend!! -Iva

      Reply
  • Erika
    March 14, 2014 at 4:36 AM

    I never really noticed it before, but these past two winters have made me think that this affects me (the weather/daylight) more than it does. And the thing is — you don’t think it’s the weather at all! But honestly, my attitude and mood and general level of hopefulness are WAY better from April/May until about November. And then it becomes a battle. But now that I know this about myself, I know I plan on leaving lots of room for breaks and a lighter schedule in the winter and hopefully a nice amount of travel to sunnier places. Not to mention, next year I want to invest in some special lights/light therapy and may even go tanning to help with it. Anyway, thanks for posting this — I was not aware of the SAD for people in the sun. I can understand that, too. I didn’t like all sunny days when I lived in Florida and California, either. I guess variety is the spice of my life! Thanks Iva!

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 14, 2014 at 7:38 PM

      Yes variety is the spice of life! I think a good balance is crucial for some people. The problem is this affects women WAY more than men so it’s a key reason as to why I decided to write a post on it. I read about a lot of bloggers complaining about the snow and the weather – how they feel down and blue, I figured if you just understand WHY it would help you overcome it or manage it. Sometimes just knowing what’s going on helps you get a grip on things. I learned years ago that weather affects my mood so I hibernate in the winters when necessary – rest plenty, try to stay on top of my eating, and not overwhelm myself with activities. I’m an introvert by nature so while I’m very gregarious and social, It can overwhelm me. So it’s just being aware of how you work and what affects you. Glad you got something out of this – this was also a long winter so wishing you a very productive and fruitful rest of the year 🙂 Have a great one Erika and talk with you soon! -Iva

      Reply
  • Liz @ I Heart Vegetables
    March 14, 2014 at 11:43 AM

    I don’t have SAD, but I’m definitely less motivated and active in the winter. It’s just hard to get myself moving! But I’m so excited for spring 🙂 hopefully we get a cool spring before summer heat hits!

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 14, 2014 at 7:40 PM

      Yeah that’s just common in the winter – and again, especially if a female. At least you’re not fully down and out! Definitely keeping hopeful towards the change in weather, spring and summer, can help you remain hopeful during the winter months. Just keep hope alive 🙂 Soon the flowers will bloom! Have a great one Liz and have a great weekend! -Iva

      Reply
  • GiGi Eats Celebrities
    March 14, 2014 at 11:54 PM

    You madam, need to come visit me in LA. I promise NO SNOW will affect you here!!! And your frown will turn right side UP!!!PS: Email me about what you asked on my blog!! 🙂 gigieatscelebrities at gmail dot com!

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 15, 2014 at 3:38 PM

      I’m planning to visit LA next year! 🙂 Just emailed you love! Have a great one GiGi!! -Iva

      Reply
  • Jessica @ Independent Travel Cats
    March 17, 2014 at 4:25 AM

    I think most people perk up when there is sunshine but yes a minority of people can develop SAD. There are light therapies that can be used as well as medications (mainly antidepressants). Talk therapies may also be useful if there are additional components to the mood disturbance other than just lack of sunlight. Anyone who thinks they may have this should talk to a doctor for treatment options. Many physicians don’t know much about light therapy options so you can look it up online and go prepared.

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 17, 2014 at 4:34 AM

      Yes sunshine helps – which is why I presume light therapies tend to be very effective. I’d be surprised if many physicians aren’t aware of light therapies. SAD is not very common affecting a smaller portion of the population but "winter blues" does seem to affect a lot of us during the winter time just because of the limited light. We’re getting more snow at this time – which is fine because at least I get to work from home. Still – anticipating the arrival of spring! Have a great one Jessica! -Iva

      Reply
  • Kate
    March 17, 2014 at 1:08 PM

    I know someone with SAD and it really did effect them but I think to an extent, bad weather effects everyone.I feel for you guys, we are well on our way into Spring over here in Germany!

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 17, 2014 at 2:15 PM

      I’m sooo ready for spring! I don’t personally know anyone with SAD but I’ve seen how it’s been affecting people including myself – I just get sluggish during the winters but it doesn’t affect me to the extent where I’d consider it depression. Glad you guys are into Spring, looking forward to that here sometime soon! Although, as of now it’s still snowing -ugh! Have a great one Kate -Iva

      Reply
  • Anna Sinclair
    March 18, 2014 at 3:16 PM

    This is why I was SO addicted to tanning for a long time. It felt good just to get 15 minutes of "sun".

    Reply
    • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
      March 27, 2014 at 11:51 AM

      wtf – I replied to your comment a week ago, lol why isn’t it on here?! I think I’m losing my marbles. I dodge tanning since it’s not the healthiest thing to do but I get what you mean -the heat does feel good at a certain temperature 🙂 <3 -Iva

      Reply
  • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
    March 13, 2014 at 10:59 AM

    LOL I don’t think Floridians are built for this weather – not if you’re a native. I’m from New York originally so I can handle it but I still complain when it’s super windy. Suddenly there’s snow in your eyes and it feels colder than it should be. I’m hoping spring gets here soon too – I think we’ve all had enough. Thankfully, the weather is supposed to "warm" up in the high 50’s this weekend so hoping to take in some sun during that time.. No snow! Have a great one Lisa 🙂 -Iva

    Reply
  • Lisa R. Petty
    March 12, 2014 at 8:39 PM

    Iva, I am a native Floridian living in Ohio. I HATE this weather. It makes me go ADD nuts when I should be working on the computer. Instead, I Google stalk. I need the sun to have the energy to focus. I hope spring gets here soon!Missing the sun, Lisa

    Reply
  • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
    March 12, 2014 at 1:41 PM

    At least we’re not expecting any snow – just a thunderstorm which I welcome versus snow. LoL That’s what I’ve done all winter – from December until usually March or April you won’t see me. You may not even hear from me because I go home and sleep most of the time and weekends are reserved for relaxation and errands, which suck enough balls but add snow to the mix and freezing temps and they suck even more so! I can imagine having all those combination of things going on in your life would suck the life out of anyone!! Definitely hang in there love – things should be better soon and hope Dr. McDicky’s treatments are being effective 🙂 xoxo love!! Happy Hump Day -Iva

    Reply
  • MJ @ Luck Fupus
    March 12, 2014 at 1:36 PM

    I can’t even with this weather anymore. It’s going up to 65ish today, and high 20’s with snow tomorrow. So. Over. It. I have a friend who basically hibernates in the winter. We don’t see her from after Thanksgiving til April. I suffer from depression, but it’s never really been more of an issue in the winter months until this year. I think with the combination of my illness, not working, surgery, new meds, etc… that with this horrible weather we’ve had, it’s been a little worse.

    Reply
  • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
    March 12, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    Holy crap! wtf? I can’t even imagine what -26 feels like!!! Man please stay warm and safe that’s cray! It’s good you work out, I still haven’t found the energy. The problem is I don’t wake up in time and when I get home the world slows down. I’m prone to that ish too since I have anxiety issues – but I’ve managed to be OK in the winter. I just take it easy and hibernate. 😀 Have a great one Kathy! -Iva

    Reply
  • Iva aka AwesomelyOZ
    March 12, 2014 at 1:21 PM

    Yikes!! Lord have mercy stay safe, dry, and warm during that time! We’re getting a thunderstorm today and temperatures will drop tomorrow to below 30’s. I’m so over with winter we need a new word for it. Have a great one Crystal and thanks for stopping by! -Iva

    Reply
  • kathy @ vodka and soda
    March 12, 2014 at 12:36 PM

    i workout like a mofo so that keeps my mood up otherwise i’d probably be so upset and moody and depressed since im prone to depression anyway. this winter sucks ass so bad. yesterday was magical and glorious and warm! today is a freaking snow storm and going to be -26 tonight WTF!

    Reply
  • Crystal
    March 12, 2014 at 12:29 PM

    We are expected to get 12 inches today! Enough already! I want birds chirping and trees green! 🙂

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

error: Content is protected !!