Summer>fall mental health check in

I don’t know about you, but when the seasons change, my anxiety always goes into overdrive. I live in Michigan, where the weather fluctuates like crazy on a good day, so the season changes can be a real (not fun) roller coaster.

I really started getting in tune with how much the weather affects my mental health when I started using a mood tracking app called Daylio. Every day I track how my mood was on a scale from awful to rad, along with activities I did that day and other emotions I felt: relaxed, motivated, weird, etc.

It’s been really informative to see the patterns that show up in my weekly / monthly / yearly mood cycles. I’ve been using it since early 2017, so I have some pretty solid data to work with now, and the app organizes my stats into handy little charts, making it easy to see that my mood takes a clear dip around April and then again in September/October.

This year, my mood has been a little more even each month, without really severe highs and lows, which is great progress! I still feel that extra prickle anxiety this time of year, but I’ve been able to bounce back a little quicker since I’ve learned to prepare for it.

Here’s what I’m doing to keep from getting knocked down by my mood during this season change:

  • Keep spending time outside and soaking up all the sun I can, even though the weather is getting colder
  • Make plans with friends to do fun things and get out of the house so I don’t get stuck in a couch vortex of sadness
  • Maintain my exercise and healthy eating routine because endorphins are magic!
  • Lean into the season change and stop expecting the weather to behave. Surprise 90 degree day in the middle of a chilly week? Put those shorts back on and lay out in the sun while you still can! A sudden cold and rainy day after a week of sunshine? Light those pumpkin spice candles and get cozy with a book inside!

Any one else struggle with season changes? I’d love to hear what you’re doing to cope/thrive in these challenging times.

Summer is over

Ok, so I forgot to post for kind of a while. It’s fine though—summer is busy and sometimes I can’t stand being glued to a computer while the sun is busy making the outdoors delightful.

I’m back here to tell you I made a playlist for the month of September that I think is quite good. Summer is over. I don’t know about you, but I have a lot of feelings about that. This playlist is an outlet. Let’s thank summer for filling us with extra dopamine and then throw it in the trash so we can make room on our shelves for fall.

 

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