You guys! It's winter time!
You and I both know that means snuggling into fuzzy scarves, sipping sweet hot chocolate, participating in wild snowball fights and fighting that quiet, relentless feeling of gloom and mediocrity that seeps in somewhere between New Year's and Valentine's Day.
Seasonal Affective Disorder is a type of depression related to the change in seasons and likely caused by lack of natural light.
It also affects roughly 10 million Americans per year, and 60-90 percent of that number is made up of women. In an exciting twist, its acronym actually spells the word SAD – isn't that funny?!?!?!
Luckily, I've been working on a list of cool activities you can do while you're suffering from SAD and busy moping around your apartment for three months, ignoring all of your phone calls, emails and personal hygiene.
Check out the list below and pick your super-fun poison!
1. Build a fort, crawl inside of it and make a list of all the people you hate.
This is a perfect activity to participate in while suffering from SAD for a few reasons.
One, it isolates you, which is ideal for when you want to be totally left alone to dwell on how much you hate societal norms and the social structure of the Millennial age that technology has forced on all of us.
Two, making a list of all the people you hate helps channel your negative feelings in a way that enables you to prioritize the people in your life who really matter.
Three, forts are FUN! Cool tip: Use your pillows AND your couch cushions. Don't have a couch? That sucks!
2. Go back and watch the first episode of "Keeping Up With The Kardashians," then watch the most recent episode and see if you can count all of the plastic surgery changes.
This is a SAD classic and great for boosting and/or destroying self-esteem, depending on your individual confidence strength.
By focusing on the plight and insecurities of others -- particularly very wealthy and famous others -- your own feelings of self-acceptance and worth will rapidly swing from feeling super secure and awesome to accepting you are an actual garbage human who will never have voluminous hair or strong nail beds.
It's an emotional rollercoaster that pairs exceptionally well with SAD symptoms, just like wine and chocolate.
3. See if melting shredded cheese on top of popcorn is a good idea or a GREAT idea.
When suffering from SAD, you may find your motivation totally plummets, making it actually impossible to go grocery shopping or cook for yourself.
Don't panic: This is totally normal and also one of my favorite parts of SAD. It forces you to become extra creative and experimental with making meals to survive off of until the sun comes out and thaws the earth and your heart.
Some common items you may find you always have on hand are: peanut butter, minute-rice, popcorn, shredded cheese, ketchup, BBQ sauce, that one Greek yogurt in the back of the fridge and, if you're lucky -- and we mean lucky -- coffee. Believe us when we say you can live off of this list as long as necessary.
Peanut butter rice balls? Uhhh, yes please. BBQ popcorn? WE THINK SO. The world (your sh*tty kitchen) is your oyster.
Also, there is always Seamless if you happen to be a king with an endless fortune available to you.
4. Visit that website where you pay $25 dollars or so for it to use technology and none of your actual genetic makeup to go all the way back in time and find your earliest ancestor.
If there is ever a time to take advantage of services or material items that are a giant waste of money, this is it. Some other great ways you can throw your money down the endless garbage shoot we call the Internet include:
5. Go back to the very first photo you ever posted on Facebook and just, like, reflect on that time in your life or whatever?
Taking time to acknowledge your own personal journey is a great activity while you're busy questioning the meaning of life anyway.
Like, where DO we all go when we die? What DO I want to be when I grow up? Why DID I perm my hair and dye it orange?
Ya know, really get into it. Facing who you are on social media can tell you a lot about who you are as a person IRL. (I learned, for example, that I love pets more than I love humans and that I apparently think I look great smiling with my tongue out.)
Most importantly, try to hang in there. During the months when the days are shorter, nights are colder and everyone gains 2 to 15 lbs (but who is counting?), be nice to yourself. Relax. Update your Netflix queue and take long showers.
Just remember: The summer months are right around the corner, full of blistering sunburns, chafing thighs and opportunities to brush up against as many sweaty strangers as you want on mass transit.
Enjoy the ride, and happy SAD!