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Some of you know I just came back from my fantastic honeymoon in New Zealand.  *pic attached
Wow!  Talk about a magical and special place.  And to be honest, I miss it.
It really took me a solid week to get back into the rhythm of things and get adjusted to “real life” again.  You know, work, stress, household duties, etc. and I also noticed I was feeling a bit down in the dumps.  I think coming off a trip where there was daily sunshine (it’s their summer), no stress and daily nature walks to winter, colder weather and everyday stresses got me feeling a bit funky.  It’s okay, it’s normal and I totally validated my feelings and allowed myself to cry for a bit accepting the lows that sometimes follow the really big highs.

If you’ve been following me for quite sometime, you’ve probably read my writings on my struggles with depression, how I work through it and most importantly, acknowledging that it’s totally okay to have these feelings.  

Anyways, in the winter time (every November, I always feel it coming on) I struggle more than average.  I find myself becoming more recluse, anti-social, tired, unmotivated and just kinda blah.  I no doubt think I struggle with SAD.  And if you’re unsure exactly what that is, you can read more about it HERE.
I was even talking to a close friend of mine the other day and I could sense she was feeling a bit down as well.  We have that kind of relationship where we can instantly tell if one of us is “off.”
“You okay?”  I asked.
“Yeah, I’m just feeling a bit down is all.  I’m struggling a bit with getting out of bed and actually having the motivation to get out and do stuff.”
“I totally get that.”  I stated.
It’s normal and I often feel the same around this time of year and many of us do!  With the time change and less natural light during the daytime, it absolutely affects our moods.

How can it not?  

It’s easy to scratch the workout because it’s too dark out or sleep in that extra 10 minutes because it’s cold outside.  You’re not alone, that I can promise you.
I think it’s totally normal that we can all feel a bit “funky” right now and at the same time, I want to share the tools that have helped me so I can help you!
Here are some of my “go-to’s” that have worked really well for me.
1.  MOVE.  When we’re feeling down it’s easy to stay in bed and convince ourselves we don’t need to do anything.  However, I promise once you get moving and it doesn’t matter what it is!  Walking, running, lifting weights, etc.  anything helps.  Exercise has been proven over and over again to help with depression and anytime I finish, I’m always so grateful that I moved my body.  Just try 10 minutes to start if you’re struggling with this.  As I mention to my other clients, set a timer for 5 minutes and if you still want to quit after that you can but at least do those 5 minutes.
2.  SUN:  With the sun setting sooner and with us getting less day light we need that Vitamin D now more than ever.  The sun is a natural healer and incredibly therapeutic for us so I highly suggest getting outside as much as possible.  I’ll sometimes take 10 minutes after lunch to just sit out on the deck and breath and point my face to the sun.  I instantly feel more alive and vibrant.  Give it a try.
3.  SMILE:  Have you heard of the half-smile?  I do it all the time and it seriously works.  Here’s what you do.  SMILE! 🙂  You don’t even have to show your teeth, even if you grin when feeling crabby, you’ll instantly feel a lift in your attitude.  Smiling forces our brain to change to a more positive mindset and we actually use more muscles when we frown.  That term, “fake it til you make it” kinda makes sense doesn’t it?
4.  FRIENDS: While it’s easy to scratch off the dinner plans with a friend, it’s really important that we try some #oppositeaction here.  Yes, we might not want to do it but how many times do we dread doing something and afterwards we’re so glad we did?!  Think exercise, social events, etc.
5.  AMINO ACIDS: I cannot tell you how much amino’s help with my anxiety and depression.  A few I like to take are:
5-HTP for low serotonin and depression
Glutamine if I’m experiencing issues with low blood sugar or feeling funky in general.
GABA for low serotonin and anxiety
Other helpful supplements include:
Vitamin D, Omega 3 fatty acid, magnesium, Vitamin C and a probiotic.
I also work with a woman who falls more on the holistic side of medicine and her shots of amino acids and B vitamins work wonders too!  Her name is Linda from 2Umedical.  Her info is HERE in case you’re interested.
I hope these help!  Here’s to you feeling your best!
xo,
Kim
To read more on wellness tips, exercise and nutrition you can join my email list at www.kimschaper.com.  Also feel free to follow me on Instagram!