Happiness through the Hours of Darkness
by Guest Writer Shari Cooper
Daylight Saving Time will end this Sunday, November 1.
During the spring season, we spring clocks ahead. Although we lose an hour of sleep, a lot of people seem to be okay with it because daylight remains longer at a time when most are out enjoying the nice weather. When autumn appears, the opposite happens, and we set clocks to fall back an hour.
Although we gain an hour of sleep that night, a lot of people tend to get depressed because darkness starts to set in early. Without Daylight Saving Time, it starts getting dark around five o’clock.
For those who work an eight-hour-a-day job, depending on the location and time it takes them to get there, it’s usually dark when they leave for work and dark when they return home, causing them to feel robbed of the sunshine, especially if they work inside. For those who do not work, this time can cause them to feel trapped if they are not able to get out before darkness sets in.
What does one do to not fall into depression during this season of darkness?
I find this to be a time to fall in love with new things or things you’ve neglected. When’s the last time you said, “I’ll finish that when I have more time?” Here’s your chance. If you’re like me and love to shop, you have a bunch of clothes. This is a great time to clean out your closet. Put your summer clothes away and get out your winter clothes. While you’re cleaning, you may consider giving some away to your local Goodwill. This will not only make you feel better, but you will make room to buy new ones!
Another thing that can help you beat the hours of darkness is reading books. A good book can help transport your imagination to another place in time. Although it may be dark outside, a good book can make you feel as if you’re in Paris drinking a glass of wine on a spring day. One thing about books is most cof them now come in audible formats. This makes them very accessible for those who choose to just chill-out, listen and enjoy their book of choice.
Watching television is another great way to pass the time. There are a lot of entertaining shows on these days. Some of my favorites are, The Masked Singer, Dancing with the Stars, and Meet the Browns. These shows keep me from being bored and are a great way to pass the time. If you want more options, get a Netflix account. You can find many good movies that will keep you entertained for days. And, if you’re in the market for a new TV, be sure to buy a Smart one because they come with many apps you can use to purchase movies for a reasonable price and on some apps, you can watch movies for free if you have WiFi.
Other things that can help you to not get depressed are getting some exercise, trying to cook new healthy recipes, decorating and rearranging your living space, and chatting with loved ones and friends.
Whatever you choose to do through your hours of darkness, try and not get depressed. Spring will be here before you know it. If you find you need some extra help, be sure to reach out to your doctor or a mental health counselor. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24 hours a day at 800-273-8255 or text “4hope” to 741 741.