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The clocks go back - and how do you feel?

The clocks turning back, the beginning of the lead up to Christmas and the pressure as well as the pleasure that brings, can lead us to reflect on how our life is currently. How have the last few months been for you? Have you enjoyed the warmth and the longer hours of daylight when it seems like you can fit so much more in a day? Or are you relieved to be able to draw the curtains and turn on the lamps and maybe slow down a little bit over the winter?

Many people can feel gloomy at the prospect of their days feeling shorter, and the dark evenings closing in on them. Exercising early in the evening may help re-energise you and help you cope better during the evening.  For some, the longer hours of darkness bring depression which is hard to shift and which has a real impact on their wellbeing. They may lack energy from day to day or have difficulty concentrating; their sleep may be disrupted; they may eat or drink more and put on weight; they may be more prone to illness and lose interest in sex or run into problems with intimate and other relationships. Across the board, things which they would normally take in theirstride may just seem too difficult to cope with. They generally feel more anxious, tearful, lacking optimism and guilty - and like theyare letting themselves and others down.

If you recognise any of the feelings expressed above you may be experiencing depression. In the UK, 80% of people experiencing depression don’t receive treatment and it is something that about 10% of us experience in any one year. Talking treatments like counselling are extremely useful in helping people cope with depression, be it seasonal or longer term. Talking things through with someone trained to listen and support can help you identify and deal with other issues that might be contributing to you feeling and being the way you are. It can also help you find some practical ways of managing your thoughts and feelings so that you function better and have a greater sense of wellbeing overall.

Perhaps it would help you to talk, to explore what you feel? I can help you with this, and together we can explore how you feel, how things are for you and find a positive way forward.

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