How I am fighting Seasonal Affective Disorder

I live in Alaska. Today the sunrise was at 9:47. The sun will set at 4:01. The sun only really gets above the tree lines for maybe two hours in the sixish hours that it is up. And I live in a basement. With the path that I am on spiritually, I am also very connected to the seasons. All of this adds up to me not wanting to do anything. Last year was the second winter I have lived in Alaska and it was difficult for me. I work as a photographer, doing the fall pictures for the schools and as a substitute teacher, so I was not working every day. I also had two weeks off for sure for winter break. I did better on the days that I substituted, but I still ended up sitting in front of the T.V. a lot doing nothing. So I learned how to knit. It is great to be able to work on something while just watching my stories. I felt better knowing that I was being productive in some sort of way. I was also taking Vitamin D3 and using a Happy Light (however, one of the bulbs was broken. Eventually DH was able to get a new one through the VA). However, I was still struggling with everything. I tried taking Saint John’s Wort as a tea, because I had had success with it previously in pill form. Ha, yeah, no. I broke out in hives. I did not want to buy anything, because we were tight on money at the time. So I talked to someone who is well versed in herbs and asked her about it. She recommended quite a few, but the one that stood out to me was yarrow. Yarrow is what many up here consider a weed, but I knew it had some great properties and had collected a few bunches during the summer. I started drinking it twice a day and it was the oomf I needed to help me get myself together.

This year I am doing better. Much better. I added a great multivitamin and fish oil to the mix. There are also the goals that I mentioned in my last post. Those were the overviews. I also have a daily goal for each area.

Career – listen to a podcast about leadership. Come up with ways to apply those principles to my life.
Financial – check the bank balances.
Spiritual – Meditate for 10 minutes.
Physical – take a walk around the loop.
Intellectual – study for 30 minutes.
Family – coffee/tea time with Jason everyday.
Social – Say hi to one friend. Has to be a different friend from previous days.

These do not take a lot of time. But these goals give me purpose. That is very big for me. If I do not get everything done, at least I got some of it done. Tomorrow is another day, and these are goals that I can always look to get done.

During the months of August, September, October, and the beginning of November, this list will go out the window. I will be working like crazy with my managing position and taking photos at the schools. That will be my focus and I balance in everything will be difficult to maintain. Unfortunately, being in homeostasis (balance) all of the time is impossible. That is something I have learned. But what else I have learned is that is what seasons are about. You will have bad times, good times, times in between where things are just status quo. “This too shall pass”. But whatever is going on, I now have these goals that I am working towards.

I have always done better when I have specific goals to work towards, and I am now becoming conscious about that. The most successful people in the world have goals in front of them. They may not always attain them, but at least they were going towards something. Another aspect of them is that if they do fail, they keep on going. Hell, I have failed. But I have kept going, and I am thankful to those who have helped me keep going. Yes, I did have people who loved me to help me get through hard times, but I had to want to get through those hard times. Me. Just like I do not want to be a complete waste of space during the winter time, so I am doing things to counteract what is going on. I am not just sitting there having a pity party for myself. I have worked hard to get where I am at today and if I stop working, I will lose it all. Life is not easy, there are so many variables that you cannot control. In fact the ONLY thing you can control is yourself and how you react to the things going on around you.

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