Unfortunately, lower temperatures and less daylight can lead to seasonal depression. But there is nothing to be worried about as you are not alone. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) affects an estimated 10 million Americans, and around 5 percent of the population may have it.
Besides SAD, students tend to develop academic burnout as a common response to stressors like never-ending lists of deadlines, group projects, essays, and exams. On top of all of that, they can also have work-related and personal problems.
When you suffer from these persistent feelings, it’s tough to concentrate on your academic performance and remain productive and emotionally stable. This article will guide you on how to help yourself when fighting SAD and burnout.
Students who suffer from academic burnout due to pressure can’t complete things on time. As a result, they are overloaded with the homework they have put off.
In this case, the best way to solve this problem is to turn to services like EssayPro, where specialists will immediately assist you. Thus, you will not only get rid of the homework burden but also save money, as EssayPro provides you with cheap services.
Anger, sadness, and fear are the same emotions as joy and fun. They are just the body’s reaction to external stimuli. Don’t be ashamed of your feelings, even negative ones. Seasonal depression and academic burnoutare not the reason why you should be hard on yourself and neglect your emotions.
They only become a threat when you fixate on problems. So, just accept that it’s happening to you. Don’t “feed” these negative feelings and worsen them. Just let them be. Take them as something completely natural, and soon you will not even pay attention to them.
When stressed, many people tend to shut themselves up and accumulate those negative emotions. Besides, they believe that they are lonely even when they are surrounded by loved ones. Some people even think that now they have become a burden for everyone and are afraid and ashamed to talk to someone.
But it’s only your perspective under the influence of depression. That’s what family and friends are all about - support and encourage you at any time. Even the strongest and most independent people need support. It’s quite impossible to get through it all by yourself.
So, talk to people you trust, ask them to go for a walk, invite them for a sleepover, and have a heart-to-heart conversation.
When you open up about feelings hunting you, you will feel understood, accepted, and less alone. Hence, you will let out the anxiety you have been keeping inside.
Try to get rid of this delusion that no one cares about you and forget about your pride or shame. Otherwise, while living with that attitude, SAD will quickly turn into a major depressive disorder.
Your mood becomes unstable when you feel stuck on autopilot with your daily routine. Then, you start focusing on the negative and intrusive thoughts and, as a result, can’t perform properly.
According to Cone Health, journaling is one of the most effective ways to improve your outlook. So, keeping a journal is like going on an emotional rollercoaster and blurting out everything we feel. You need to write down all the emotions you are struggling with or are happy about.
Most importantly, keep a journal of everything you’re grateful for. Thus, you will remind yourself that your life is worth fighting for and it’s time to move forward.
By being aware of stressors making you tick, you will better understand how to avoid burnoutand depression and improve the situation.
We all know that good sleephygiene is the foundation of a balanced life. Yet, many students ignore this fact and fully devote themselves to their studies without taking proper care of their mental and physical health.
If you prioritize studies over your health, you will put your mind and body under pressure, as they can’t function without enough rest. But you might ask, “How can I fall asleep if I need to work harder to manage my finals?” for example. Remember, you can always communicate with your professors and ask for extensions. Besides, you will definitely fail if you don’t rest enough.
We recommend you plan your sleep hygiene.
- Include having a warm bath with aromatic candles.
- Prepare clean sheets for your bed.
- Drink a cup of milk to help you calm down and relax.
- Put away electronic devices and go to bed.
- Finally, don’t think about anything before sleeping.
Light therapy is believed to compensate for the lack of exposure to sunlight and thus heal people who suffer from SAD. The light used in this therapy may cause a chemical change in the brain that boosts your mood and eases other symptoms you are experiencing, such as fatigue, feelings of despair, and long sleep.
The good thing is that you can buy a lightbox without any prescription. However, it is not safe to use it without the guidance of a healthcare provider. Also, take into account that there can be some side effects:
- irritability or agitation;
- mania, euphoria, hyperactivity, or anxiety associated with bipolar disorder.
Light therapy might be a good solution, but let’s not forget about the importance of natural sunlight. If you make it a habit to take a break from studying and go out at noon, you’ll notice how much it boosts your mood. Also, don’t forget about opening your blinds to let more sunlight into your room.
Just as your body needs sunlight, it needs sport. People often think that exercises are beneficial only for keeping fit, but they also do wonders for your mental health.
According to Verywell Mind, sports help mitigate symptoms of various mental disorders. So, why don’t you spend at least 30 min per day exercising? Here are the benefits you will have after doing sports:
- reduced stresshormones levels;
- boosted mood;
- minimum troubling thoughts and emotions;
- increased confidence;
- improved immunity against diseases.
If you don’t want to go to the gym and feel intimidated by working out, you can try out these physical activities:
- cycling (both indoors and outdoors).
People who suffer from SAD report having vitamin D deficiency. That’s why sunlight is essential, as it’s the source of this vitamin. But it’s not the only source that you can benefit from. Include the following foods in your diet to get more vitamin D:
- cod liver oil;
- orange juice;
- canned tuna;
- soy milk;
- egg yolks;
Being a student is hard work. Every day you need to obtain numerous amounts of information, accomplish various assignments, write essays, and so on. It happens that you can’t complete everything in due time. And because of this, many students tend to burn the midnight oil and set unrealistic goals.
By now, you already know what impact it has on your life and health. That’s why don’t try to cram everything at once. Otherwise, you will only feel worse. Take it slow.
Be realistic when setting up goals and know your limits. If you have just received a big task, don’t try to complete it immediately. Arrange your schedule to accomplish some parts of this task when you have a day off. Thus, you will be on the right track and will avoid academic burnout.
We hope you will take into account all the tips listed above. Take care of your mental and physical health, and stay safe!