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Transition to Fall

Fall in Bloomington can be a wonderful time of year—the leaves are changing color, and there is the cool and crisp feel to the air. Indiana University students are settling into the reality of midterm tests and having fun at football games.  Bloomington residents are out and about in the fall weather and are beginning to think about the upcoming holidays. In other words, there is a lot of CHANGE and TRANSITION occurring.

Many people who have any level of depression, anxiety, or mood, do no realize that transitioning into fall (and cool and cloudy weather) can be difficult. Each year around the third week of September until the end of October, many of my clients explain to me that they start feeling worse but they do not always have a reason/cause for the feeling. I explain to them that the transition of the season alone generally can explain an increase or intensity in mood, and sometimes low energy. In many cases the seasonal change can cause an increase in eating disordered behaviors.

Knowing about the possible stress at this time of year, I encourage clients to take action steps for extra self care. The following suggestions can often be helpful during this transitional time:

  1. Get enough sleep.
  2. Eat at regular time intervals when at all possible.
  3. Tell friends you may need extra support.
  4. Plan a fun activity on the calendar each month.
  5. On sunny days, try to be in the sun a minimum of 15 minutes—proven to help your mood!

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