December 21 Winter Solstice Marks the Shortest Day Of the Year

Digital Wellness Expert Offers 4 Tips to Prevent the Winter Blues

The Winter Solstice on Tuesday, December 21 is the shortest day of the year and for many, it means the winter blues. Getting less than eight hours of daylight can trigger dark times, both physically and emotionally for people as millions of Americans struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).  Author and Digital Wellness Expert Mark Ostach encourages you to reset your habits, particularly your digital wellness habits.

The winter solstice for the Northern Hemisphere happens at 10:59 a.m. Tuesday, December 21, according to Almanac.com. During that day, the sun travels its shortest path through our skies, resulting in only eight hours and 46 minutes of daylight. SAD can be any lasting change in mood that regularly occurs during particular seasons. 

“Becoming depressed with the shortened days of the winter months is most common,” says Ostach. “Some people welcome the beginning of winter and others dread this season. With fewer hours of sunlight, some of us have to take extra steps to cope with SAD.”

Ostach adds we need to reset our habit. 

“By recalibrating our habits, we can become not only more efficient and effective but reconnect internally and externally. This can help boost our mood and help deal with SAD better.”

Ostach offers four tips to cope with SAD:

  1. Protect your first 10 minutes & last 10 minutes of the day! Our minds are like sponges and thirst for things that are good when we wake and when we lay in bed at night. Be intentional about how you start and end your day.
  2. Get as much natural sunlight as possible. Vitamin D is critical for your overall well-being. Make sure to spend a few minutes outside when the sun is out. Even if that means stepping away from your TODO list. 
  3. Get fresh air and go out for a walk. Take your dog out for a walk or do some power walking and get the blood moving. 
  4. On days when you’re feeling down, reach out to someone. Don’t just Doom scroll on your phone, reach out to someone with a phone call or meet up for coffee & conversation. 

The good news is the days will slowly get longer as we inch toward the longest day of 2022, the summer solstice, on June 21. 

Digital Wellness Expert Mark Ostach in the News: