Sean M. Thompson
Seasonal depression is great. Really. It’s like thanks brain, thank you for pumping me full of fucking sadness at a time when it’s dark at like 4 o’clock in my home state, I can’t hike anywhere unless I want people looking at me like some kind of literal monster that’s also a drug dealing rapist, and I could really use the extra oomph to deal with all the added complexity of navigating in the dark.
But alas, November marks the beginning of my and many other people’s seasonal depression! It’s fun, in the way that knowing you still owe debt collector’s money is fun, or in the way that stubbing a toe with an infected toenail is fun. Which is to say it’s the antithesis of fun, but there are ways you can deal so you don’t just fucking jump off a building.
TIP #1 BINGE ON ENTERTAINMENT
Lately over the last few years I decided nordic crime shows would be a good go to when November rolls around and the darkness envelopes. Last year I watched The Lava Fields (Hraunið) and this year I’m starting one called Jordskott. The point is, find something to be excited about that you will want to come back to over and over again.
One of the hard things with depression, and especially that of the seasonal variety, is feeling like there’s no reason to get out of bed or do anything. So having something, anything to look forward to when you get home can be a real help.
TIP #2 TRY THIS DUMB ASS HAPPY LAMP HORSESHIT, BUT ALSO VITAMIN D
I’m a bit of a hypocrite as I’ve yet to even find where I even left my happy lamp. And admittedly, I’m not sure if it helped me last year. However, I try it. I try to do a half hour every day I remember, though it is a pain in the ass. You basically have to shine a fucking light in your eyes to trick your brain into thinking it’s been out in the sun. So, mileage may vary on this.
I’m pretty sure Vitamin D helps too. So I go grab some of those supplements. I figure it’s got to help with something.
TIP #3 GET LOST IN A PROJECT
The irony of recommending depressed people find a hobby is of course that when you’re depressed you don’t feel like fucking doing anything. But I urge you, even if it feels useless and hollow, try to think of something you enjoy, or at the very least something you can do to pass the time and get your mind off of the negative thoughts. I write, but you can do whatever you want. Get into puzzles, get into wood carving (although if you’re prone to cutting, maybe don’t do wood carving) hell collect soda cans. Just find some way to keep yourself active, which leads me to the dreaded next tip…
TIP #4 EXERCISE?
Again, kinda hard to get up and get moving when you’re depressed, but getting your sweat on will help your mood, even if it’s in such a small way you can barely track it. I try to hike when I can, if I can, on the weekend, when it isn’t fucking dark out. However, there’s plenty of indoor exercise you can get.
The problem I tend to have is finding indoor exercise where I can be alone. I’d recommend Solitary Fitness by the one and only Charles Bronson (British prisoner, not the movie character). It’s a guide on how to get in good shape using nothing but books and chairs and doing a shit load of push-ups and crunches and such.
If all else fails, maybe pace your place of residence wondering where you life went wrong?
TIP #5 SATAN
By far the most helpful tip I have to give. Get into the Dark Lord. On a dark day, I turn to Satan to fill me with joy. I find Lucifer in every dickhead that cuts me off in traffic, in every teller who acts like I’m some sort of asshole because I want them to just fucking ring me up and no I don’t want a god damn rewards card. The Devil teaches us that at the end of the day humans are pretty fucking awful, so you should delight in your hatred of them, and wait patiently for a sign from his Infernal Majesty as to what you should do next.
Satan really turns my frown upside down, and is the best way to deal with seasonal depression.
Sean M. Thompson is a writer from Massachusetts. He has a B.A. in English from The University of Massachusetts. He loves horror and anything weird. You can find him on twitter @spookyseanT and his fiction at https://www.amazon.com/Sean-M.-Thompson/e/B01LZPYY4W