Seasonal Affective Disorder is a real thing.
For many years, people have overlooked this rather debilitating condition and insisted that it’s nothing more than a reason to be negative. That’s not the case. SAD affects million of people worldwide and can lead to a very negative outcome in some situations.
During the summer months, we enjoy plentiful natural light and sunshine. That allows our bodies to soak up that sunlight and enjoy plenty of vitamin D. However, when the winter months arrive, those shorter days also come our way. The clouds cover the skies most of the time and it seems to be dark far more than its light.
That in itself is a pretty depressing outlook, however the lack of sunlight can also cause a person to feel extremely low and lacking in productivity.
That is when SAD enters the picture.
Check out this video for a bit more information on Seasonal Affective Disorder.
As an employer, the productivity of employees is important but their health and wellbeing should be paramount. You can help a person who struggles with SAD by changing certain things about their working set up, including increasing the amount of light they encounter.
You can’t change the fact that winter is a generally dark season but you can introduce light boxes into the office. This means a person who has SAD can soak up more daylight throughout their working day at their office desk. You could also move their desk to be closer to the window and make sure that windows are open as much as possible and certainly avoid anything blocking the window and affecting how much natural light enters.
Encourage anyone who is feeling particularly low during the winter months to head outside on their breaks and get some fresh air, natural light, and exercise. But above all else, show plenty of understanding and do some research into the condition to allow you to help your employees the most.