Depending on where you are in the world, you might currently be enjoying springtime. Here in Edinburgh the days are already so much longer and lighter, nearly all the trees are in bud if not in leaf, and seedlings are sprouting all over the place.
What impact does all this activity, new life and energy have on you? Does it give you some extra get up and go, are you getting round to doing things that had only been a plan so far this year? Does the optimism of nature around you make you feel optimistic too? Maybe the long winter of slowness was just right for you to compost, and with the sunshine, higher temperatures and activity all around you, you are bursting with energy yourself!
Or have you been taken by surprise by some feelings of melancholy and fatigue? Maybe you can’t find any spring in your step, and are feeling sad, heavy or low. The German language has a word for this feeling:
It means ‘Spring Tiredness’ – and there’s even a Wikipedia page about the feeling – find it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Springtime_lethargy
As well as feeling uncomfortable, you might also be wondering what’s going on with you. It might not seem to make sense: you’ve been waiting for spring through the dark, cold winter months, and maybe there were things you were looking forward to. But now it’s here, none of those things seem appealing. Feeling low wasn’t part of your spring plan for yourself. As well as this mismatch between the nature around you, it might also be quite lonely to feel sad at this time of year. It’s ok to share how hard winter is emotionally, but there isn’t much open talk about any negative feelings in springtime.
So, what to do if you are experiencing something like ‘spring tiredness’? If you know what activities often help you to feel better, it might be worth trying one or some. But you might not feel up to this. Talking to someone often helps, perhaps there’s someone you could call. If you don’t feel like speaking to a friend, then google organisations near you that have a free telephone listening service.
If you are feeling low or sad, or something like that, it might be familiar to you – maybe from other spring times, maybe from other times. When you read about ‘spring tiredness’, you might recognise your own experience, or you might realise that your experience in fact is something different. You might want to work through these feelings with a counsellor, a trained professional who’s there alongside you.
Whatever you decide to do, always remember to treat yourself softly and gently, and to speak to yourself in the kindest way you can.