Cool weather and darker days have set in. The holidays have come and gone, and the bills have piled up. We’re back at work and hit with the harsh reality of this time of year. Monday, January 19 2015 marks “Blue Monday”
Although Blue Monday is not scientifically-proven, this day offers the chance to create awareness about mental health in a non-threatening way. We encourage you to start conversations with those around you; family, friends, co-workers or your trusted support network, as an attempt to break down the stigmas and shed positive light on mental health.
As a tool to check-in with your emotional well-being this time of year, Calgary Counselling Centre has opened an online and anonymous Depression Screening Test. It will allow people to take a short online and anonymous questionnaire to check-in with their emotional well-being.
The test is available Monday, January 19.
Here are five tips to help manage the winter blues:
- Seek social support: don’t underestimate the power of friends, family, mentors, co-workers, and neighbors. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or encouragement when you need it. Something as simple as a phone call, a chat over coffee, or an email can brighten your mood.
- Rejuvenate yourself: make a conscious effort to eat well and exercise during this period. This will help get both your body and mind back on track and keep you from falling back into negative thoughts or feelings.
- Get some sun: not only will the extra sunlight boost your Vitamin D levels, but it can also improve your mood. Winter is full of shorter and darker days and because of the cold weather most of us flock to indoor activities. Try keeping the blinds open and sit near windows where you can – and of course head outside during chinooks!
- Expect good things: give yourself something to look forward to so that you feel better about leaving the holidays behind. Plan a weekend getaway, try a new sport, or meet a friend for lunch.
- Check-in with yourself: it is important to take a moment and check in with yourself to gauge whether the feelings you are experiencing or temporary, or something more than that. Take a short online and anonymous depressing screening test to check in with your emotional well-being this time of year.
Calgary Counselling Centre is always here to help. With no waitlist, a sliding fee scale based on income, and barrier-free access to counselling for all Calgarians.
You can register for counselling online: https://onlineintake.calgarycounselling.com OR contact our Call Centre 403.691.5991.