A self-help guide to prevent winter blues

Mindi Wikstrom- Staff Writer

Dordt College embarks on another cold adventure as winter draws near and snow begins to fall. Many students love winter, understandably so. Yet, many people are more prone to depression during this period. These individuals trudge through each day, inwardly battling the medical condition called “seasonal affective disorder.” With exposure to less light in the shorter daytimes, people are more likely to become disheartened by the gray weather.

We are not left without hope, though. Here are some ways to prevent the winter blues as winter approaches:

1. Hit up the Rec Center: Exercise is proven to release endorphins – an accelerated heart beat prompts your body to release a hormone that helps you feel happier and less stressed.

2. Make an effort to go outside: It may be freezing outside, but studies show that if we get just a bit of vitamin D in our systems, we will be more likely to feel happier.

3. Don’t overeat: People are more likely to turn to food as a comfort or in boredom during the winter months. While in the moment food may give your body a sense of contentment, in the long run it will lead you to feel sluggish and fatigued, two emotions that may contribute to feelings of sadness.

4. Get involved with a group: Start a Bible study, play an intramural sport, join a club, have a deep conversation with a friend, or just make an effort to go to campus-wide events. Loneliness is an attribute of sadness. Make an effort to meet new people and experience fellowship!

5. Spend time in the Word: there is a Power greater than the winter blues. Remember, true contentment comes from God.

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