Local counsellor addresses winter blues, coping strategies

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They don't call it the “winter blues” for nothing.

A registered clinical counsellor in Nelson says the winter season can see increased emotional, domestic and relationship issues, but it doesn't have to end there.

Amanda Erickson says if you notice yourself becoming more reactive or easily frustrated, it’s important to slow down and try responding and communicating in a kind and patient way, adding if you’re having difficulty with that then it could be a sign of deeper emotional challenges.

Erickson says the transition into winter is a great time to start developing coping strategies.

People can sometimes rely more on substance use but healthy coping strategies such as taking a walk, phoning a friend or preparing a good home cooked meal can help.

If you haven't sought mental health services before, Erickson says it's important to find properly licenced mental health professionals adding you can even get the conversation started with your family doctor.

She says even a few sessions of talking, opening up and being vulnerable with someone can help you learn how to process more difficult emotions moving forward.