Ben smiling in winter clothes with snow fallingWe've all been told that when you're looking for a job, it's important to keep a positive attitude. However, winter may affect your outlook. While lots of people suffer from the winter blues, some people are diagnosed with seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a mental illness affected by changing seasons, overcast skies and poor light conditions. Here are some tips that can help.

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Battle the Winter Blues During Your Job Search

Dec 9, 2020

Ben in winter clothes smiling during WinterWe've all been told that when you're looking for a job, it's important to keep a positive attitude. However, depending on where you live, the onset of winter can affect your outlook. With shorter and colder days, we're less likely to go outside to get some fresh air or catch up with friends. This situation can take a toll on how you feel and your motivation. To stay active in your job search and battle the "winter blues", here are a few ideas to try.

  • Get outside every day if you can! A change of scenery, fresh air and sunshine (a source of natural Vitamin D) can help improve your mood. Make sure you wear warm clothes and layer up!
  • Pick a partner to join you in an outside activity. Schedule a time and commit to a routine.
  • Fit in some exercise while you're outside. Stretching, walking or lifting weights may be a great place to start, if you're able. If the weather doesn't permit you to venture outdoors, find some indoor exercises that you can do.
  • Accomplish a goal. Set goals for your job search. Be sure to write them down and cross them off your list as you achieve them.
  • Take time to relax. Read a book or watch a favorite TV show or movie. Make one of them a comedy. Listen to upbeat music.
  • Let in the light. Open the curtains. Turn on lights. It may not be sunshine, but lighting can improve your mood.
  • Connect with friends or family. Pick up the phone, write an email or set up a Zoom meeting to stay in touch.

What is seasonal affective disorder (SAD)?

While lots of people suffer from the winter blues, some people are diagnosed with seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a mental illness affected by changing seasons, overcast skies and poor light conditions. Symptoms include:

  • SnowflakeOversleeping;
  • Fatigue;
  • Feeling lethargic;
  • Irritability and stress intolerance; and
  • Lack of interest in daily activities

If you experience some of these symptoms, please contact your doctor or call the National Mental Health Help Line: 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or 1-800-487-4889 (TTY).

What is seasonal affective disorder (SAD)?

While lots of people suffer from the winter blues, some people are diagnosed with seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a mental illness affected by changing seasons, overcast skies and poor light conditions. Symptoms include:

  • SnowflakeOversleeping;
  • Fatigue;
  • Feeling lethargic;
  • Irritability and stress intolerance; and
  • Lack of interest in daily activities

If you experience some of these symptoms, please contact your doctor or call the National Mental Health Help Line: 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or 1-800-487-4889 (TTY).

About Ticket to Work

There's a lot to consider when job searching, and it can be tough trying to do everything on your own. Social Security's Ticket to Work (Ticket) Program supports career development for people ages 18 through 64 who receive Social Security disability benefits (SSDI or SSI) and want to work. The Ticket Program is free and voluntary. It helps people with disabilities move toward financial independence and connects them with the services and support they need to succeed in the workforce.

By participating in the Ticket Program, you'll have access to a wide variety of services from Ticket Program service providers that offer free short-term and long-term supports to help you find and maintain employment.

Want to learn more?

Join us on December 16 from 3-4:30 p.m. ET for our next Work Incentive Seminar Event (WISE) webinar: Ticket to Work and Mental Health.

Register now.

Learn more

To learn more about the Ticket Program, visit choosework.ssa.gov or call the Ticket to Work Help Line at 1-866-968-7842 or 1-866-833-2967 (TTY) Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET. Ask a representative to send you a list of service providers or find providers on your own with the Ticket Program Find Help tool.

Learn more

To learn more about the Ticket Program, visit choosework.ssa.gov or call the Ticket to Work Help Line at 1-866-968-7842 or 1-866-833-2967 (TTY) Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET. Ask a representative to send you a list of service providers or find providers on your own with the Ticket Program Find Help tool.

Receive Ticket Program Texts

If you're interested in receiving text messages from the Ticket Program, please text TICKET to 474747. Standard messaging rates may apply. We'll send updates from our blog, identify steps on the path to employment and more. We hope you'll find this new way to stay in touch helpful. You can opt out at any time.

If you're interested in receiving text messages from the Ticket Program, please text TICKET to 474747. Standard messaging rates may apply. We'll send updates from our blog, identify steps on the path to employment and more. We hope you'll find this new way to stay in touch helpful. You can opt out at any time.

Receive Blog Updates
  Opt in to receive information about the Ticket program via text. Text the word "TICKET" to 474747