12 Tips to Remedy Seasonal Depression

Fall Starts with National Suicide Prevention Month

Seasonal depression is a real thing as I just got an email that September is National Suicide Prevention Month. Wow! Summer over already? In Southern California, the weather doesn’t alert you to the change of seasons. The leaves on palm trees don’t change color. Actually, the drought has all but done away with trees. It’s 78 degrees and there is no obvious difference so we desperately look for a sign that we are approaching winter, things such as: 
  • Angelenos are starting to lose their tan.
  • With all the kids back in school, the ocean water smells better as there is less pee in it.
  • Weight Watcher meetings are less populated with swimsuit season over. 
  • The slight coolness in the air whips up sad feelings of loved ones who have fallen from us. We mourn for what was, who we once were, who we’d hoped to be and never will.
You’re probably thinking, “Hey, Judy, you’re supposed to end with a joke.” I know, that last bullet was sad.  And that’s why September makes sense for a Suicide Prevention Month.

But, as someone who sometimes falls into seasonal depression, I look to turn messes to successes. It’s a way of making them hurt less. Some of you prone to seasonal depression understand what I’m talking about. So, I’m sharing my list of things to do when you fall backwards. I keep it on my iPhone in my “Notes” always available to turn to. That helps cope with the urge to have yet another Whiskey Sour, order Chinese food delivery AFTER dinner, or I find myself wondering if middle age is too late for a second career as a prostitute. 

Carter’s Combat Depression List:
Break into in case of emergency


Hug your dog.
  1. MOVE: Go to another room. Go in the yard. Go to the store. Go anywhere other than where you are.
  2. GET A MASSAGE. People who get paid to touch us generally do a better job than the ones in bed with us. 
  3. SHOP ON AMAZON. You can always return the stuff when you feel better.
  4. WALK YOURSELF OR YOUR DOG TO A NEW PLACE. Get away from the usual routine. The vibes of a different place, with different people is invigorating and healing. 
  5. WRITE AN APPRECIATIVE FACEBOOK POST, SEND A TEXT OR EMAIL. Tell someone how and why you appreciate them. Helping another person is a terrific spirit lifter.
  6. PLAY A VIDEO GAME. Shooting the bad guy is a great way to express your anger and lift the fog.
  7. SING. Even if no one else will, your dog will listen.
  8. MAKE A LIST. Count the times you felt happy and try to recreate that state of mind.
  9. GIVE AWAY MONEY. But not to the wrong candidate. Kiva.com is a great site that loans money to impoverished small business owners who repay them. It’s the gift that truly keeps on giving.
  10. GO ON MEET.UP.COM You’ll get to know strangers who are worse off than you. Maybe others who’ve read this list. That will help put things in perspective.
  11. PAINT BY NUMBERS. When I write my books, I always do paint by numbers. You can’t go wrong. It’s easier than staying in the lines in a coloring book. There are no choices and it’s guaranteed to look like the picture on the box it came in. 
  12. LABEL THINGS. Get an DYMO labeler and go to work. It makes a satisfying sound as it spits out labels such as “Ground Cumin” “2015 Taxes” and “Love Letters Circa 1985.” You will feel productive. But, if you over do it and start labeling you cats, “Cat” call your therapist ASAP.
What are your tips to fighting Fall Funk?

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Judy's Blog

Judy Carter blogs on comedy, storytelling and public speaking techniques, using personal stories and her adventures as a stand-up comic turned motivational public speaker. Her weekly blogs are read by fans of her books, “The Comedy Bible” (Simon and Schuster) and “The Message of You” (St. Martin’s Press), which include comics, speakers, and entrepreneurs. She is also known for teaching the value of humor and storytelling to businesses as a leadership and stress reduction tool.