Ways to Boost Your Mood During Summer (+ Help with Reverse SAD)
Out of the four seasons, Summer is my least favourite. It’s hot, sweaty and can be very uncomfortable to sleep. I also burn very easily (even in overcast English weather) which doesn’t help my ill feelings towards the Summer season either! And I’m not the only one; an estimated 10% of people in the UK experience depressive episodes in the Summer months. Commonly referred to as “Summertime Sadness” or the clinical name ‘Reverse SAD’.
Photo by Alexander Shustov on Unsplash.
But why do some people experience low moods this time of year? Aren’t the bright sunny days supposed to brighten our mood? While that’s true for some people, research shows that the long days, excess light and increased heat can throw off the body’s internal clock. Causing not only disturbed sleep patterns but also effecting production of serotonin in the brain.
Common symptoms of reverse SAD are lack of sleep (including insomnia), loss of appetite and increased anxiety, for example due to body image or upcoming social events. Two things I struggle with myself especially during bikini season and with my agoraphobia.
6 Ways to Boost Your Mood During Summer (+ Help with Reverse SAD)
Like all mental illnesses there isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to treatment, and if you are struggling I would encourage you to speak with your doctor. However, there are a few things you can try at home to help relieve some of your symptoms. And try to enjoy Summer a little more.
It’s well known that getting outside, especially in nature, is both a great form of exercise and mood booster. But for those that burn easy, hate feeling sweaty or it can be tempting to shut yourself indoors. Believe me, I’ve been there.
So, instead of going out in the midday sun (typically between 12 – 3pm) I’ll go for a walk mid morning or late afternoon. Even an evening walk on occasion. It’s certainly a lot cooler! And there’s less chance of sun burn although I’d always recommend sun protection.
Pitville Park Cheltenham
Staying inside has also been shown to increase feelings of isolation, but if going outside in the heat, seems impossible for you there are other options. Try looking into indoor activities local to you, such as museums, or fitness centres, like indoor climbing. Anything to get you out of the house and help you feel less isolated.
Learn to Say No
BBQs, picnics in the park, festivals and other social gatherings which is enough to make anyone feel overwhelmed. So learn to say no if you have enough Also adding the fact that many of these things cost money too.
Watch the Sun Rise (or Set)
If there’s one benefit to those early mornings and brighter evenings it’s sun rises and sun sets. I love watching the clouds move and change colour; everything just looks a little more picturesque to me. The bright colours never fail to brighten my mood.
Sunset over London
In the UK we don’t have air conditioning in our homes (and it’s rare in shops as well), so many of us rely on fans to keep cool. They’re great if you’re struggling to sleep at night with the muggy weather, but if the noise bothers you, I’d also recommend opening your window with the curtains closed. Helping let the fresh air in and keeping the creepy crawlies out!
Distract yourself with a new hobby
Find a new activity you enjoy (or rediscover one of your old ones) and completely immerse yourself in it. You could even look at hobbies which will get you get you outside a little more, such as hiking, kayaking or stand up paddle boarding. I know I feel better about the heat if I’m doing something fun in it.
Kayaking in Cornwall
Every part of the human body needs water to help it function and the brain is no exception. If you don’t drink enough water dehydration can sap your brains energy, effecting it’s ability to produce serotonin and increasing stress in the body. Both of which can effect your mood! So remember to drink plenty of water so that you stay hydrated.
Talk to someone
As mentioned earlier in this post, if you’re struggling I’d encourage you to talk to someone you trust, get in touch with a helpline or see your doctor.
Have you been affected by Summertime Sadness (or Reverse SAD)? What advice would you give to someone struggling this time of year? Let me know in the comments.
The Blog Brew is a collaboration between myself and 9 other lovely bloggers. Each month we will write a post relating to the Blog Brew Collab on our own blogs. And this month is all about Summer.
You can stay updated here and learn all about our blogs. Here’s our schedule for the month:-
- 23rd July – That’s me! Thank you for reading. 😊
- 24th July – Head over to Introverted Creativity
- 27th July – Head over to Perselem
- 28th July – Head over to Wonderer and Traveller
- – Head over to Tales of Belle
- – Head over to Kirsty Marie
- – Head over to The Makeup by Beth
- – Head over to Mrs Slee-Jones
- – Head over to My Breaking Views