When You Get The SAD Funk: Visible Monday

Have any of you struggled with SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder? It’s common in the northern hemisphere in late fall and winter, and I have it. From WebMD:

One theory is that less sunlight during fall and winter leads to the brain making less serotonin, a chemical linked to brain pathways that regulate mood. . . . The result can be feelings of depression, along with symptoms of fatigue and weight gain.

Funny/sad/SAD story: I bought a SAD-specific therapy light last winter, a good quality one that had many positive reviews. It gave me headaches and anxiety, so I returned it 😊.

I experience most of the above symptoms of SAD. Even though I’m a mental health professional, and understand what’s happening, I get the sad feelings. My low energy is not a positive thing either; over the years I’ve learned to make small changes, and developed survival techniques. It helps to stay in contact with friends, to get some outdoors time, and to sleep/eat well.

Welcome to Visible Monday. If you want to participate, it’s so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the how-to. Link back to Not Dead Yet Style if you like – we’re on Easy Does It “rules” now!

I didn’t have the energy for a photo shoot this week! And I’ll see how I feel about it next week. Having my own picture taken has always been my least favorite part of blogging, despite the fact that I enjoy visibility. Instead, I cheer myself, and I hope cheer you too today, with a couple of fabulous winter party looks.

A cranberry velvet jumpsuit is grown-up and perfect for a festive party. Love that little clutch.

Most important, I give myself permission to slow down, feel a little sad, and not “keep up with expectations.” Heh, that could be the motto of my life: “She kept up with expectations.” So I go easy on myself, and let the dark evenings calm me.

For a dressy party, or Christmas dinner at our favorite riverfront restaurant: a rich red embroidered dress. This one doesn’t need much accessorizing!

Are you feeling beautiful and visible today? Show us (whatever you’re wearing) in the link-up!

Now, let’s see what’s in your closet, Visible Women.The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple:

  1. Whoever wants to can join in! Just compose a post that includes any outfit, accessory, piece of jewelry, hairstyle, cosmetic or other adornment that makes you feel more confident, alive and visible that day.
  2. Go to the bottom of this post and click on the InLinkz button “Add Your Link”. It should open a new page.
  3. In the “Next Step”, you crop the pic (easy tool) you want to display, and you’re done!
  4. Visit a few other bloggers, to make new friends and increase your own following.

Stay fabulous, and wear what you love, xo

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  1. My energy level just plummets during the cold, darker months and I find myself avoiding any holiday-related social events. At least I know this happens and am prepared for it but it still sucks!
    You would rock either of these outfits! I haven’t been taking photos of myself lately and the “cutout doll” option is a great way to go.

  2. I luv your cut-out doll creations. Way to get new clothes in a snap. I did enjoy playing with them as a kid. Thanks for sharing your SAD. I get it whether it’s dark or not…

    • Oh hi Pao, you super sew-er! Love all the items you picked as your favorites in your post. Thanks for coming over and linking up the cool stuff. xox

  3. I struggle during Winter too – I find January the worst month. At least I can keep busy in the run up to Christmas but afterwards it seems like Spring is an age away. Last January was a particularly tough one for me so I’m trying to pre-empt it this time around and do everything possible to avoid the seasonal slump. I love the outfits you’ve picked out! Hope you’re feeling better soon xxx


    • Yes, I’ve heard a lot of people suffer in January – with Spring seeming so far away. Stay well, and btw your golden sweater is a stunner! Love the whole look, xox.

    • I have heard of this before but never paid much attention. Why I have no idea since each year around this time I get so depressed. I had a very hard childhood and this was a really bad time of year so I have always thought it was because of that but maybe SAD is part of it too. Thanks for the post. Also, Red is really your color. You look so lovely in both outfits. my favorite is the lace dress. That is a beautiful dress.

      • Hello Susan and thanks for coming by. I’m sorry you’re feeling blue. Thank you for the kind words, too. xox

  4. sorry that you’re not feeling ok, and also sorry that the new therapy light didn’t work, so dissapointing!. And I’m glad that you’re learning to manage it, slowing down and taking your time, I think you’re really wise!.
    It looks like many people are suffering from this issue. I’m on the contrary side of the spectrum, as I have to deal with my spring asthenia which caused me some depressive episodes in the past. But I’m doing it better every year, probably because now I can afford to take a beach holiday in March! ;D
    besos & salud

    • Thank you, Sra. for all your kind words. Sorry you’ve had the seasonal blues as well – and a vacation at the beach is a welcome treatment! Love your Fall look today, xox.

  5. I have been exhausted lately (and strangely not sleeping very well either), so I went to get my thyroid checked. Turns out I have a severe vitamin D deficiency (the normal range is 30-100 and I was at 13!). Sunlight is so important in the winter months! Hope you feel better soon.
    Cheryl Shops | http://www.cherylshops.net

    • Wow, that is interesting, Cheryl – thanks for sharing the details. And thanks for linking up – i would love a Cartier tank watch, always found them exquisite! xox

  6. I’m sending you lots of furry pug hugs…they are my only defence to a cold, grey, long Canadian winter. Furry family members not only keep us warm, they keep our soul happy.


    • They do that! One of our cats is a sleep-snuggler, gotta love that. Thanks for linking up – your post about shoe care is a keeper! Have a wonderful day, my friend, xox.

  7. Giving yourself a minute is so important!! I def notice SAD— it’s even worse not being in FL!! Was so spoiled down there with extra sunshine!! I always get low on vitamin D, which exacerbates everything!

  8. Hi Patri
    I always seem to dread Jan-Feb as those months are dismal and cold. I try and do more – go out and talk with friends, something so I don’t get depressed. I understand this, about SAD, and struggle with this too. Sorry to hear you deal with this as well.

    • Hello Jess and thanks for linking up. Sorry to hear you struggle with similar issues. But your gorgeous golden dress is cheering me up already! xox

  9. Yes, I’ve heard of SAD but I never knew someone could live in Florida and get it. I know it has to do with light and not temperature though. We northerners really suffer from it because sometimes we can’t even get out of our house for weeks and we don’t see warm temperatures for months. We go to Florida for some relief. I LOVE these outfits! They are both so stylish and beautiful.

    • Good morning, Amy and thanks for coming by for Vis Monday. Yeah, I had SAD when I lived up north, but I had a lot of youthful energy then! Your new jacket looks toasty, and your home is gorgeous, xox.

    • Good morning, Kim and thanks for linking up! Yes, SAD is more about the darkness than the temp, but it does help to be able to go outside and get some sunny hours! Love your casual party look, very cool. xox

    • Hello dear Mireille, and thanks for coming by. To the question: “how many boots do you need?” I usually say “one more” : > xox

  10. I find that I’m very sensitive year round to whether I’m getting enough sleep or not and to the diet I’m eating. It really drastically effects my mood and energy level. I think this time of year can be especially tough because of the holidays and all the added stress. I’m all for listening to ourselves and how we’re feeling and cutting ourselves a little slack now and again, so good for you. I’m sure you’ll be feeling better again in no time.

    • Good morning, Julie and thanks for coming over. And a big yes! to cutting ourselves slack! Love, love your true red coat, xox.

  11. Patti, this post could not have come at a better time. I literally have not gotten out of jammies since Friday. I do believe that I also suffer from SAD but added to already existing Bipolar Disorder, the winter funk can get pretty treacherous. If not my for children, it could be a really bad situation. However, they keep me chugging along as best as I can. I have to get up and out and get them off to school today which is a good thing as it will force me to get myself into some clothing. Fortunately, I have a stockpile of outfit photos to share on the blog. It is nice to know that I suffer not alone in this! I hope your mood as well as mine swing back to normal soon! Thank you for bringing up the topic. I might address it as well this week on my blog.


    • Good morning, dear Shelbee and thanks for linking. Sorry you’ve had the blues too, and “winter funk” is a good way to describe it. Let’s get into some cheery outfits today and have a hot chocolate! Take good care, xox.

  12. Patti, I don’t suffer that but have suffered for a year with a slipped disc. Yes some days I can do outfits and others not. Some weeks I do allow myself to miss a blog as it’s just too painful to sit and type. Thank you for sharing and I have written about my experience in a post linked here.

    • Hi Anna and thanks for coming by. Sorry about your pain, I understand a slipped disc can be miserable! I do share your enthusiasm for His Dark Materials, a brilliant show. Hope you feel better soon, xox.

  13. Ah, I know what you mean, Patti. While I don’t have a diagnosis, I do find that I have lower energy and feel a bit sad when the weather is dark and dreary. We’ve had rain off and on for a couple of weeks, and I find myself feeling listless. That’s why I do much better here in California than I did living in Michigan. The winters were super hard on me. I’m glad you’re going easy on yourself and taking it slow.

    xx Darlene

    • Good morning Darlene, and thanks for coming over, and for your kind words. Yes, Florida and California are better for SAD than Michigan! I hope you have a great week ahead, xox.

  14. I hope the blues fade away real fast! It s Grey cold and rainy over here so that doesn t lift up my mood either!

    • Sorry to hear SAD is affecting you this season , I hope it leaves you soon as I know from my own experience its never an easy time. I find due to lack of light my Vitamin D levels become low. I take a supplement during out Winter months and find that helps me feel better. Many thanks for hosting Patti, all the best.

      • Hello dear Jill and thanks for coming by. A little more Vitamin D is a good tip, thanks for that too. Your new Moyuru trousers are fantastic – I can see you giving them lots of wear! xox

    • Good morning Nancy and thanks for linking up! You are gorgeous in your black tulle, xox.

    • Good morning, Debby and thanks for your kind words and for coming over! Have a lovely week ahead, xox.

  15. When I still lived in Germany I got the winter blues around January. Everything is gray in gray. Interestingly, despite we have so short days in Fairbanks in winter, I haven’t had it here. Maybe one produces enough vitamine D during the 84 days long daylight period? Who knows.Love the photo collages. You look stunning with the red lace dress. I so would wear that dress. It’s a dream.

    • Hello Nicole and thanks for joining the party. Loved your feature of dressing up in different parts of the world! xox

  16. I struggle at this time of year too, Patti. I try to be kind to myself, and get out for lots of walks. Although I’m introverted, I also try to interact with people as much as I can, because it often helps me.

    I’ll be there shortly with my Visible outfit! I hope you feel un-SAD soon. Hugs, She

    • Thanks for the kind words, and you’re right about the walks and the human contact. You look gorgeous in your cobalt party dress and your bronze Visible Mon look! xox

  17. Ah, every year I used to dread October-December because that’s when all I want to do is lounge on the couch and read fiction. For the longest time I thought I was having a Creative Block. A few years ago (4? more?) I realized that it’s a seasonal thing and that I don’t need to freak out. I reframed it as “hermit time” and as “filling the well”. Oddly, hasn’t struck yet this year. Maybe I’m too busy?
    I like your solution to not wanting to pose. Haha.

    • BTW, the thumbnail photo was taken in the East Village. Not sure if that shop still exists. They had The Best hot chocolate made with chocolate laced with orange. Mmmmm. Want some now!

    • I like that re-frame to “hermit time”! Thanks for linking up and for the tip on hot chocolate with orange, xox.

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