Blue Monday, usually falling on the third week of January, is known globally as the most depressing day of the year.
The current extreme cold temperatures in the southwest have residents stuck inside with less fresh air and sunlight—just one of the many things that can lead to mental health struggles this time of year.
Erin Fenwick, a counsellor with Fresh Start in Swift Current, said financial stress and loneliness after the holidays are other common burdens.
“I think it's important to remember there's not really a magic answer,” she said. “It’s just doing the things we need to take care of ourselves.”
One of the first steps recommended is taking extra time for self-care practices, such as making sure to exercise, eating proper meals, and keeping a healthy sleep schedule.
However, human connection remains extremely important.
Whether it be catching up with friends, talking to family members, or meeting with a counselor—sharing meaningful conversations with others can be a tremendous relief for mental health struggles.
“It doesn’t have to be a crisis to reach out for help,” said Fenwick. “It can just be a conversation or to help you work through any challenges that you’re having.”
Fresh Start in Swift Current offers counselling services in-person, over the phone, or through Zoom. Anyone considering reaching out is encouraged to do so.