Winter Joy

Happy New Year!  In line with our constant pursuit of happiness, I am attaching the following Happiness Calendar (GGSC_Happy_January_2018) provided by the Greater Good Science Center.  If this calendar does not ring true for you, you can try creating your own calendar by printing out a blank calendar for the current month and filling out one activity a day that usually brings you joy.

However, if you are noticing you do not feel happy regardless of what activities you engage in, then know you are not alone.  There may be other causes of your unhappiness and therapy can be one venue to help you discover your roadblocks to contentment.  One roadblock may be grief for losses in your life.

Another roadblock may be Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).  According to the Mayo Clinic, “a drop in serotonin, a brain chemical (neurotransmitter) that affects mood, might play a role in SAD. Reduced sunlight can cause a drop in serotonin that may trigger depression, and the change in season can disrupt the balance of the body’s level of melatonin, which plays a role in sleep patterns and mood.” To help you cope with the symptoms of SAD, I recommend the following:

  1. Expose yourself to sunlight by going outside or sitting near a sunny window for at least 20 minutes per day and/or try light therapy.
  2. Take Vitamin D daily
  3. Move your body.  You can walk briskly, stretch, or do other movements you typically enjoy.
  4. Drink lots of water and eat warm nourishing foods.

Click on the following link for the January 2018 Happiness Calendar:

GGSC_Happy_January_2018

May your 2018 be filled with safety, health, acceptance, and moments of pure joy.