Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

How to help combat seasonal depression

Aubrie Selsmeyer / Advance-Titan

As Wisconsinites, we get the privilege of experiencing all four seasons. This inherently means winter. Everlasting, frigid Wisconsin winters are not for the faint of heart. 

It gets dark by 4 p.m. and, for some people, the thought of this is already scary. The downward spiral into what we refer to as “seasonal depression” is quick after Halloween. But it doesn’t have to be this way! 

There are many ways to combat this gloomy feeling so that you can enjoy winter — what feels like our longest season — to the fullest extent, all while keeping your mind intact. This list doesn’t include a self-tanner, but maybe it should?


Get out of the house!

It’s so easy to coop ourselves up in our homes/dorms in winter, refusing to leave the warmth of our beds – but trust me, you need to get out of the house. Make plans with friends and keep them. It can be as simple as ice skating or maybe it’s putting forth the extra effort to organize a ski getaway. Winter can actually be enjoyable with the right people and activities. 



Yeah, yeah. I know that everyone pawns exercise off as the cure to all things wrong in this world, but this time I actually mean it. This doesn’t mean that you need to wake up at the crack of dawn and drag yourself to the gym in snowpants. It could be as simple as walking on the treadmill or signing yourself up for that yoga class you’ve always wanted to try. And maybe going to the gym at the crack of dawn is your thing. Stay active this winter and your mind will thank you.


Engage in the little things 

Maybe this means finding a new TV series to watch or buying a new book to read. It could mean cooking or baking new seasonal recipes. We all have our different hobbies to pass the time and they usually become more important in the winter. It’s the perfect time to finally learn that one confusing card game or finish building that Lego set you started in the summer. Completing little tasks and projects are great sources of happiness. 


Establish a routine

It’s so easy to fall out of routine when the weather plummets along with our motivation. A good way to keep away the winter blues is to find a good regimen that works for you. 

Establish consistency in one way or another each day. Get yourself out of bed by making a really good cup of coffee; set aside time at night to journal or fold your laundry. It can be little things, possibly even chores, that you do daily that will establish a purpose and routine for yourself. 


Talk to someone

Winter can be a difficult time for people in many different ways. This goes for holidays, too. Sometimes reaching out to talk to someone can be a really good thing. As the saying goes, starting is the hardest part. Try talking to a therapist; you may be surprised at how relieving it is, even if you think that you don’t need therapy. Maybe you don’t need it in the ways that other people need it, but that doesn’t mean it won’t help. 

Winter does not have to be a dreadful time of the year, even though it seems to last so long in Wisconsin. We almost have to enjoy it in order to get through it. Waking up to wind chills of negative 20 degrees never gets easier, but maybe a warm cup of coffee can make it bearable. 

Don’t forget how magical the first snowfall is and how nice it is to swap pumpkin spice with peppermint. Be gentle on yourself this winter and take it day by day. Prioritize your mental health and make sure your family and friends are doing the same.

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