As the temperature drops, so does your motivation. You suddenly feel less excited about projects in your life, even the ones you were excited about months ago. What’s the deal? Why do you feel unmotivated in the fall? Here are some potential reasons, along with tips to get through the slump.
Seasonal depression is a form of depression that happens when the seasons change. Most people who experience seasonal affective disorder (SAD) do so in the fall and winter. However, you can experience SAD in the spring and summer months as well.
The specific cause of seasonal depression still remains a mystery, but some theorize that it is from a limited amount of sunlight in the cold months. Reduced sunlight can cause your brain to produce less serotonin – a chemical that triggers happy reactions. Seasonal depression can be treated through therapy, though some clients also receive medication for their treatment.
Holiday and End-of-Year Stress
Fall represents the start of the holiday season. This is an exciting time for many, but it can also be a stressful time. You may have several events to go to during the last months of the year. Conversely, you may be depressed about not having events to go to or not being able to see your family. If you have to buy gifts for the holidays or host a get-together, that can be stressful too. Combine that with stress at work and shorthanded shifts while people are on vacation. It’s easy to see why you may not be motivated.
You’re in Need of a Break
When is the last time you took a break? It was probably some time in early summer, but it might not be that recent. Because most workplaces have time off during the holidays, the break you need may still be several weeks away. You feel overworked, overstretched, and in desperate need of some time off. That can quickly make you feel unmotivated.
Quick Ways to Get Motivated in the Fall
Want to fight back against the drain on your brain? Here are some motivation tips for fall:
- Try not to count down the days. Rather than watching your calendar and waiting for time to pass, just focus on the day at hand. Your vacation will come soon, but it can’t come any
- Break large tasks into smaller tasks. You eat a pizza one bite at a time. Your current project is no different. Take on small ‘bites’ day by day until you eventually finish the full project.
- Use a time management cube to stay productive. These are simple timers that you can set on your desk or anywhere else when you’re tackling a project. Set the timer for 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 60 minutes, etc. Then plow through work for that entire time. When the timer goes off, take a break.
- You can do anything for one minute. When it feels like you just can’t get through the day, push for one more minute. You can handle just about anything for one full minute, and once you do, you’ll realize it wasn’t that bad.
- Get plenty of sleep. You may feel more fatigued in the fall and winter because of limited sunlight. Make sure you get plenty of rest to combat the fatigue and stay energized in the day.
If you would like personalized tips for stress management, depression treatment, anxiety treatment, and more, work with a licensed therapist near you. Sherman Counseling has multiple therapist offices, with specialists in nearly every area of mental health. Contact us to get matched with a therapist near you.