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5 Ways to Beat the Post-Holiday Blues

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Now that the holidays are wrapped up for the year, it feels as if we may need to wait another 11 months to feel that holiday joy. It seems common to have the post-holiday blues. If you’ve already broken your New Year’s resolutions, overindulged in delectable treats, have zero motivation to get off the couch, and have lost that bounce in your step, here are a few tips to get you back on track onto the right path for a merrier year.

1. Sunshine Therapy

Vancouver is known for its long, wet, and gloomy winters. To overcome sunless days, I recommend light therapy, AKA fake sunshine. Phototherapy has been well researched and has been shown to improve mood, increase energy, and promote better sleep. I purchased the Verilux HappyLight Touch Liberty Energy Lamp VT20WW at Costco for $99 dollars. However, you can find light therapy products online or in stores. Just remember you’ll need a lamp that emits 10,000 Lux, which is the best light range to achieve results.

PRO TIP: Use for 15-30 minutes daily. Sit 12-18 inches away and light must be near your pupils.

2. Healthy Eating

48371178_10157580960923538_6844163963953872896_oI’ve tried plenty of fad diets promising and “proven” to lose weight. After multiple attempts, I’ve realized the importance of developing healthy eating habits, better than diets. Incorporate into your diet plenty of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables packed with Vitamin C, D, E, and K. Vitamin D in particular increases your mood.

PRO TIP: Vitamin D is found in fortified products, cheese, eggs, fatty fish, and supplements.

3. Stay Active

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It’s a known fact that basic exercise for 30 minutes can boost mood, alleviate stress, and improve your overall health.

PRO TIP: Being active doesn’t always mean suffering at the gym. You can have a fun dance party at home, walk to work, attend a fun activity session, or download a convenient home workout app on your phone such as, “30 Day Fitness Challenge.”

4. Develop Good Sleeping Habits

Jim got off on the wrong side of bed this morning. Don’t be like Jim. Have a good night’s rest to prevent irritability and improve concentration and energy levels.

PRO TIPS: Decrease your screen time 2 hours before you go to sleep. Turn your phone or tablet on silent. Try low stimulating activities an hour before bed, such as reading, having a hot bath, or listening to calming music. Stop caffeine consumption after 2 p.m. Use lavender scented products to enhance relaxation prior to bedtime.

5. Seek Help

If you’ve tried all these tips and you still feel blue, it’s very important to recognize your needs. Talk to a friend or family member. Remember, there are many treatment options for Depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Seeing a counsellor or taking antidepressants may be beneficial. Don’t be afraid to seek the help that you deserve because everyone has the right to access mental health services and receive help without shame or stigma. Here are mental health centres in the Lower Mainland that can be accessed.

If you live in the City of Vancouver, you can call or visit the Access and Assessment Centre:

Note: They only service clients who live inside the Vancouver area.

Phone Number: 604-675-3700

Address: 803 W 12th Ave, Vancouver

(located at VGH, ground level of the Joseph and Rosalie Segal building).

Hours: 24 hours, 7 days a week

If you live in the City of Burnaby, you can call or visit the Burnaby Mental Health and Substance Use Centre:

Phone Number: 604-453-1900

Address: 3935 Kincaid St, Burnaby

Hours: M-F 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

If you live in the City of Surrey, you can call or visit the Surrey Mental Health and Substance Use Centre

Phone Number: 604-953-4900

Address: 1100 – 13401 108th Ave, Surrey

Hours: M-F 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

If you live in the City of Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, or Port Moody, you can call or visit Tri-Cities Mental Health Centre

Phone Number: 604-777-8400

Address: 1-2232 Elgin Avenue, Port Coquitlam

Hours: M-F 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

 

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