Season change and winter

Any advice for sober winter/season change? I live in USA, east coast. Clocks went back this past weekend and now it’s cold and dark and will be for quite some time. I moved back here after 15 years in London, where it was darker for longer, but to be honest I was drunk for the vast majority of that time, so this feels new and different.

Maybe it’s the change of seasons or maybe I’ve got a case of the Mondays, but despite going to a really good meeting this morning and connecting with some folks, I’m irritable AF, wicked tired, unfocused and unmotivated.

Stuff I’ve done to help the situation:
Got my nails painted bright pink
Bought yellow flowers
Started taking vitamin D
Outside walks a couple times during work day
I usually exercise, but my routines are wonky lately (trying to figure out how to prioritise morning meeting and workouts) and my ankle was bugging me this morning

Any other suggestions? Was feeling happy and grateful this morning, but it slipped away during the day and it feels like the season change seems hard, though maybe it’s just all the other junk overlaid…


This time of year really puts the zap on me too. I have been prone to winter blahs and winter blues for as long as I can remember. Some years I was borderline depressed.

My advice is to make a schedule and stick to it. Get up at the same time every day, and make your bed. Get enough sleep, but just enough. Exercise and take vitamins especially D and C. If the weather is sunny and mild, get outside. I like to nap in front of a sunny window on the weekends. I wear a dark tshirt and sweat pants that soak up the heat. Listen to positive podcasts and read uplifting books. You are what you eat, and the same applies to what you feed your brain.

If there’s a place with an indoor pool, go swimming. Believe it or not, I swim more in winter, than I do in summer. Whirlpool and Saunas are great too.

I hang pine boughs and cinnamon brooms up in my home office. The smell is uplifting.

Most of all be mindful of your mood, and intentional in how you manage it.


Hi there I have lived in New Hampshire my entire life and every year I am surprised at how early it gets dark! You are doing so many good things to help yourself. Vitamin D is certainly beneficial as is exercise and getting outside in any weather. Maybe you could try swimming in an indoor pool as it would feel like summer and could help when your ankle hurts. Also exposure to plants and lights can help. I am not a winter sports person but most people who participate in them seem to love winter and being outside. I think this time of year is hard for everyone in this area I think it gets a little better with the holidays then again difficult until spring when we forget about it until next year. This will be my first sober winter as well so I am hoping to cultivate healthy routines to help me make it through. Lots of tea, skin care, yoga, brisk walks along with lots of homemade soup are what I am planning for myself!


@Yoda-Stevie @Ap0611
Thank you both so much - those are all really excellent suggestions! I need to think and plan out some routines and strategies and I really appreciate your ideas!

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I’m also in your time zone, and I feel your pain. My doctor suggested replacing all my lightbulbs with full spectrum bulbs. A noon walk outside is also helpful if your job allows. I also second having lots of plants inside. Probably a placebo, but they just make me feel better!


I find that St. John’s Wort also helps with Seasonal Affective Disorder.


I’m in the beautiful PNW and also get S.A.D.

It gets dark at 4pm, and rains and rains and rains. It wears on ya. Add holidays, my 2 sons birthdays (Dec 22 and 27), and mine in Jan, it makes for a depressing stretch.

I like to take off for a week in Sunny California, it breaks the monotony of the dreary winter days, and allows me to escape my extended family for a bit. We usually go during xmas when the kids are out of school. Other than that, grin and bwar it.


your luck you dont live in Scotland can get all the seasons in a week lol wish you well


I live in Pittsburgh, so same time zone. Both time changes are really hard on me. They mess with my circadian rhythm which just screws everything up for a few weeks.

What I love when it starts getting dark out is reading. A lot. I read all year round, but for some reason I love it more when it’s dark. Also, my showers get about ten minutes longer. I love to stand under the hot water and close my eyes and just relax. I don’t take baths because my cats love to hang out in the tub and I’m too lazy to completely scrub it out all the time. But baths are great if you can take them.

I recently started taking D3 vitamins and the difference I’ve noticed already is unreal! Better than any antidepressant I’ve ever tried! I really can’t believe it. It’s so simple!


D3, huh? I’m on it!

Not even joking, I’ve never had ANYTHING give me motivation and make me care like this has. Well, maybe brand new romantic relationships, but that wears off. :joy: