If people know anything about Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), they usually think of the winter blues. It’s a little more than that but for some people, winter is just the worst for them, and they’re in a funk until the days get longer and warmer.
Did you know that there’s a summer version? For me as the days get longer and warmer, the more little black cloud of doom I become. I’ve decided I need a plan to help me survive summer. The first step of my plan is to be open and honest about it and what better way to do that then share it with all of you.
1. Make plans.
I learned this one from a friend who has the more common SAD. Drive in movies, Shakespeare and concerts in the park, etc. Enough to get me out of the house around my favorite time of day but not too much that I feel pressured to be on the go. I want to squeeze in a day trip or two to San Francisco or toward the mountains.
2. Embrace the nocturnal.
I’m fortunate that this is an option for me. Avoiding the day star and the bulk heat of the day by sleeping through it, alleviates some of the dread. Dusk is my absolute favorite time of day, the world takes on a violet tinge and things are still visible, even the high temps are more tolerable when I’m not getting a mega dose of vitamin D to the face.
3. Not cooking a damn thing.
I’ve already informed my household that we’ll be doing some kind of omnivorous version of being raw once summer rolls around. I’m going to ask my fellow punkies over in our Homestead subgroup for their best salads and cold food recipes.
4. Not apologizing for canceling.
A few years ago, I read this article about not apologizing for things beyond your control and I’ve tried to implement it with not much success. The gist is to thank people for their understanding. Instead of being sorry you’re late, thank people for understanding traffic was worse than expected. Apologies, in my opinion, are overused and should be reserved for behavior you want and/or have the capacity to change.
5. Letting go.
I’m channeling Elsa this summer and preemptively allowing myself to get sucked into the existential weltschmerz. I know it’s going to happen, but I feel that my plan is a decent staircase of small steps spaced sporadically to keep my head above the water the majority of the time.