Three profitable remedies to postnatal depression

Women get postnatal depression after they have carried a child, usually in the first few months, and it may last up to several months or even a year. Symptoms include sadness, fatigue, changes in sleeping and eating patterns, reduced libido, crying episodes, anxiety, and irritability. The prevalence varies from 5% to 25%, depending on what study you refer to. After months of preparations, two weeks of negotiations and a few nights of intense labor, the climate summit in Durban, gave birth to an agreement. By now, most of the delegates have left and returned home to their countries.

The other night I had dinner with one of the participants from Sweden. His tan gave away the fact that he spent a lot of time in the sun outside the congress centre, waiting for any signs of advancement in the climate talks. But his eyes were troubled, the usual spark temporarily gone.

“It’s post-COP-depression” he shrugged. He had the same feeling returning home from COP15 in Copenhagen, as he has now, post-negotiations in the Natal province.

This diagnosis may not be resting on solid scientific basis, but for those affected, it is very real. But who isn’t feeling a bit blue after the birth of such a lame treaty? Who isn’t feeling low after realizing the leaders of the world isn’t capable of agreeing on something that is so important, for all of us?

For all of the men and women who went to Durban with great expectations, the chance of them getting post-COP-depression within a few month,s is substantially higher than parents getting a postnatal depression. In a few months, the parents will see evidence of their child getting stronger by the day. At the same time, it’s not unlikely that even more countries will have jumped the ship and made the treaty in ever more need for life support.

And not only is the climate treaty depressing, economist and Nobel laureate Paul Krugman even diagnosed the entire world economy with depression last week. So how to avoid feeling blue ourselves? In an article published during COP15, psychologist Marina Järvinen stresses the importance of stable everyday routines, not to dwell on the past and treat yourself a few days off, as means of keeping the depression away.

But there are ways of dealing with the depressing result from Durban as well as the depressing state of the economy, all at once. People in the C-suites I’ve spoken to over the past few days have confessed they find comfort in the fact that they do the best they can in reducing greenhouse emission and save money doing it. Here are three simple, proven and profitable ways of lighting up your mood.

  • Cut back on energy consumption. The less energy your company uses, the less you affect the planet and the more profit you make. It really is that simple. Depending on who you ask, you can save between a fifth and a third of your yearly energy usage. The low hanging fruits to save money can be found on energy hunts, where unnecessarily lit lamps, equipment that should be in sleep-mode and heating for no-one in particular are identified.
  • Switch to renewable energy. To sleep well at night, go for wind, sun, thermal, hydropower or any other energy source that is renewable. Yes, that kind of energy does cost slightly more per kWh but the savings you get from having cut down your energy usage absorbs the added cost and delivers increased profit.
  • Slim your need of transports. The way we move people and products affects the climate more than we might think. The big savings does not come from switching from gasoline to biodiesel or natural gas, but from eliminating transports al together. As a target, replace every other meeting with tele-presence solutions, eliminate every third cab ride and a fifth of your parcel dispatch and investigate alternatives. To win big, you have to rethink equally big.





EnglishPer GrankvistDurban