light during the day. If you work in an office, you likely spend the majority of your daylight hours there, not getting as much time to enjoy the sun or be outdoors as you are used to during other months. This can naturally lead to seasonal depression and it can make going to work seem like even more of a chore. Many people think there is nothing they can do except tough it out for a few months (or longer, depending on how the weather is where you live). It doesn't need to be this way with the many options out there designed to help manage seasonal depression. Check out these ideas on how to combat seasonal depression and make the office a more appealing place, for you and your co-workers alike.
Consider Bringing In Plants
Greenery can make all the difference in a positive atmosphere, especially if you're used to staring at blank or empty walls most of the day. Plants that flower can make a nice addition, but you want to be mindful of any allergies your co-workers might have. Some suggestions for beautiful green plants that can uplift spirits and are easy to take care of include bamboo, spider plants, and ferns, to name a few. Even if you're not getting much natural sunlight, your office lights can be beneficial in helping the plants grow.
Plan A Small Work Party
Sometimes having something to look forward to is enough to perk up anyone's spirits. Consider having a small office party or get-together or even extending lunch hour just a little bit. You can have catered food or a potluck and everyone can talk, catch up, or just relax for a little longer than usual. If taking extra time out won't have a negative effect on everyone's schedule, this could be helpful not only in brightening everyone's day, but it can be viewed as a team-building exercise, too. Or, if you cannot plan work events that will benefit everyone, consider doing fun things after work that you will enjoy, such as planning a special night where you order take-out or make time for a favorite game you haven't played in a while.
Open Up Blinds For Brightness
Take a look at your window situation at work. Do you have blinds and if so, are they open or closed? Think about opening the blinds so you can get as much sunlight as possible. See if others in the office will do the same, so everyone can enjoy the natural light when possible. If you cannot open the blinds or there just doesn't seem to be that much sun, consider a light box to help combat seasonal depression. These are also sometimes called light therapy boxes. You can put it in your office and reap the benefits of enjoying light during the day or even in the evening. See how well getting additional light works for you in terms of helping any seasonal depression you feel. Although it might not eradicate it completely, sometimes it is enough to make your day better.
Encourage Exercise For A Midday Pick-Me-Up
Take time out of your busy day to sneak a quick workout in. If the weather is somewhat nice, you can go outside for a quick walk. Or if there are stairs in the building you work at, make time to run a few laps. If you have fellow co-workers who are facing the same issues, invite them to join you so you can motivate one another. Or you can go by yourself and make time to clear your head. Exercise generally creates endorphins that can help boost your mood and make you feel better, even if the weather is overcast or you're having a bad day. If you make time to sneak a quick session in, you're less likely to feel tired and can enjoy a burst of energy to help you get your tasks done before the workday ends. This alone might be worth your efforts.
Make Healthy Snacks Accessible
Snacking healthy doesn't have to be boring. You can incorporate fruits, nuts, seeds, veggies, and other types of healthy treats into your workday or even have them in the office for others to enjoy. Eating healthy can come with additional benefits, like helping you lose weight, and you are likely to feel less lethargic and tired because of overeating or consuming food that is high in sugar and carbs. If others in the workplace don't want to eat healthily, don't let that discourage you. Keep a reserve of your favorite mood-boosting food or even try a new diet such as a Ketogenic Diet. If you need a treat, look for protein bars or even some dark chocolate to help brighten up the day.
Try Supplements To Help Your Mood
Supplements can help, and while they might not be something that everyone in the office wants to try with you, it doesn't hurt to see what they can do. Pay close attention to your body and needs, and don't take too much of anything, to begin with. Check out supplements like Active PK and see if you could benefit from something that could give you a boost in your workday. If you have more energy, you might not feel as depressed about the lack of light or the fact that it is getting dark by the time you head home.
Think About Music To Lift The Mood
Music can benefit your overall mood and help lift your spirits. If you currently do not have music in the workplace, see if it is allowed, or consider bringing in a radio or have it stream through your phone. It normally doesn't matter what type of music you are playing, although your job may have certain restrictions on what you can listen to if you're not allowed to use headphones. Soundscapes, nature sounds, and classical music are all safe bets for just about any work setting and can help you feel more lively and even positive about the day ahead.
Dealing with seasonal depression in the office can be difficult. It's hard to go into work and see most of the day go by, knowing that by the time you are done, there won't be that much sunlight if any. Knowing how to handle seasonal depression is key and these tips can make it easier. See if you can bring in plants to brighten everyone's day and provide you with a little added color. If you haven't opened up the blinds in your office already, do so, or think about putting a light box in. Exercise can provide you with a physical and mental boost and help you have extra energy to get everything you need to accomplish done, and healthy eating can make you feel less sluggish and improve your mood. Some individuals have luck with supplements, so see if these could be a possible option. Lastly, try music to help lift your mood and get you through the day. You don't need to feel you must pick one option or the other either; trying them all could make an immense difference in your day-to-day life at work and help you perform your best.