Shifting the winter blues – how do you manage it?

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  • Shifting the winter blues – how do you manage it?
  • Premier Icon muddydwarf
    Subscriber

    Ta OMITN & mrsflash 🙂

    Last week was bad – silly bad. found myself outside B&Q ready to buy a rope, that’s when i knew it was time to see the doc. I’ve always been somewhat down at this time of year but add that to the effects of my personal life going t!ts up & it all got on top of me.
    So far the meds haven’t made me ill apart from a little ‘loose bum’ effect on the first day.
    So far so good n’all that….

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    Sandwich – good call. I’ll check that out. Not planning on getting to the point of needing ADs.

    Mrs flash – no bother. One big happy (usually) helpful family here, aren’t we?!

    MD – I forgot to say. The biggest thing for Mrs North wasn’t taking the drugs, but doing CBT. I know that on similar threads in the past, the likes of Julian Wilson and TandemJeremy have recommended talking therapies, and having seen the results, I would too.

    There are all sorts of talking therapies, all of which might broadly be covered under the heading of "counselling", but each of them addresses you and your issues in difering ways. so, Mrs North tried regular counselling (she talked, the counsellor listened), but that didn’t work, because all she did was talk into an apparent void.

    Then she tried CBT and found someone she could engage with, someone who forced her to re-evaluate herself, where she was at and how she could approach taking control of and changing her situation. This very much suited what she needed, and has proved succesful. She has started back at work (having ultimately taken around 6 months off), and I reckon only did so because the meds made her feel steady, and the CBT has allowed her to operate normally again. She continues to see her CBT therapist, but isn’t so much receiving CBT anymore as life coaching.

    Be aware that you may well need to pay for private treatment, rather than waiting to see people on the NHS – this is due to the often long waiting lists associated with counselling, etc.

    Email me if you want to know any more: ourmaninthenorth AT googlemail.com

    Cheers

    Tom

    FYI SRIs often reduce libido and orgasmic capability 🙁
    CBT does not have this effect.

    Premier Icon muddydwarf
    Subscriber

    SRI’s?
    CBT ?

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Ride more. Ride harder. Ride faster. Get high on endorphins. Ride even harder. Where’s the problem?

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    SRI – serotonin re-uptake inhibitors. Most modern anti-depressents fall into this category (well, technically, they’re selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors – they work by prevent the re-absorption of serotonin, meaning that your levels are lifted, making you happier).

    CBT – cognitive behavioural therapy.

    SFB (simonfbarnes) is right about the effect of SSRIs. However, many people having been close to the brink worry less about this in the short term and more about their overall mental health.

    BWD – you’re right. Save where one is too knackered to ride all the time. and most of my riding seems to take place in the dar and/or rain. And getting chucked out the back of a chanigang hardly does much for the old happiness stakes….

    Premier Icon muddydwarf
    Subscriber

    Well considering my libido has taken a real kicking anyway because of the ex, i don’t think i’m too bothered about that right now!
    I’m going to give MIND a call, apparently they do 6 hrs for free & they have a branch in town.

    meaning that your levels are lifted, making you happier

    to the limited extent that one CAN be happy without shagging…

    coffeeking
    Member

    I found St. John Wort helps considerably when feeling low and worried, no noticable side effects for me. Was also recently proven to be as effective as synthesised pills IIRC. After a few days on them you start to sleep better and pick up in your mood.

    Theres the link: Knew I’d find it somewhere

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    to the limited extent that one CAN be happy without shagging…

    Quite. But you take the point.

    Was also recently proven to be as effective as synthesised pills IIRC

    ie not very, even the best antidepressants struggle to rise above placebo levels of effectiveness. The main thing is you’re doing something

    coffeeking
    Member

    sfb – I know not of the actual reasoning behind it but I was first given them without knowing what they are (I trust my missus when she tells me I need something, very open to poisoning I think!) and within a week I was far happier, but I genuinely cannot wake up when I am taking them – they knock me into such a deep sleep I can sleep through multiple alarms. To me thats pretty damned effective. A family member was on proper pills after a rather lengthy and unpleasant (and ongoing) family problem and the difference in her almost overnight was astounding. Be it placebo or not, it turns your life around when you’re feeling that low, which as you say, in turn leads to doing stuff that gets you back into the normal world.

    Some people on here have overly simplistic views and are obviously confusing SAD with an off day. However the suggestions of riding more are correct, it’s just hard to leave the house when you feel that bad. I’ve not had a bad run for several winters now and when I do I know to force myself out whatever the weather.
    I’ve got a SAD lamp for work which looks just like a normal lamp, my workplace is very badly lit so definately had an effect on me. I also find a dawn alarm works which slowly turns on in the morning to simulate dawn light, so much better than getting woken up suddenly and hitting the snooze button 4 times!

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    I do a fair bit of riding – currently all on the road – commuting and weekend club rides. Interestingly, my enthusiasm for each is waning, but I know the value of being out there.

    Some people on here have overly simplistic views and are obviously confusing SAD with an off day.

    Interestingly, this is a more intense version of how I felt for a while last year after spending so much time working like a trojan for no perceived benefit. This feeling is brought on by the dark of winter, the recent redundancy programme at work, the lack of work to do daily…. It’s by no means as bad as Mrs North had it – she had proper burn out – but it is lingering loinger than I’d like. A dark office with no external view doesn’t help.

    I’ll look into a SAD lamp and definitely a daylight alarm. The latter might be a real benefit, as I’m struggling to get out of bed until it’s light every day!

    I hope you won’t take this as rude, but the thing I learned from CBT is that you have to take control and responsibility for your moods. Life only has meaning through DOING, and every minute you waste in "can’t be bothered" is lost to you forever. This isn’t "Pull yourself together", which isn’t helpful, but rather, there is so much you can do, so much fun to be had, that you owe it to yourself to do it and not languish :o)

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    Not sure who this is aimed at, SFB.

    That aside, I agree entirely with this:

    Life only has meaning through DOING, and every minute you waste in "can’t be bothered" is lost to you forever.

    It’s how as much as possible of my life is lived. Even when fighting to get out of bed in the morning….

    Not sure who this is aimed at, SFB.

    it was to you. I suffered from depression on and off for 3 decades, but a few weeks of CBT fixed me 🙂

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    I’m not convinced it’s depression, at least not in any significant sense.

    I’ve seen the benefits of CBT first hand, and so would always consider that.

    Right now, it is all about the peculiar combinaiton of winter + cr*pness at work.

    Cheers for the advice, though. Much appreciated.

    scotabroad
    Member

    Go skiing! I am tomorrow 😀 😀 😀

    Premier Icon ourmaninthenorth
    Subscriber

    Thinking about it, Scotabroad. Thinking about it quite seriously. Even though I haven’t skiid since a school trip in 1988…. I mean, how hard can it be?

    😉

    I’ve seen the benefits of CBT first hand, and so would always consider that.

    well, my mum had SAD too, and CBT helped her a lot 🙂

    Premier Icon muddydwarf
    Subscriber

    Well i have to say my ‘troubles’ are more linked to personal problems than SAD – although SAD does have an impact,
    I came extremely close to hanging myself last week. No drama meant, that just how close i came to being a ****t.
    It’s not an easy thing to admit & i am grateful to my friends for pulling me through this crap.

    Think on people.

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