Have you noticed how a sunny day, or the first morning light striking your window leaves you feeling hopeful? And when you look out the window and take it in, do you feel suddenly energized, like the sun’s rays has struck a bolt of unexpected optimism right through you? And when the weather changes, darkening, all that optimism goes right out the window from where it came.
Well, you’re not alone. There’s an established link between feeling low and overcast weather. A lack of light has a direct effect on your mood. According to various findings, sunlight acts as a natural mood enhancer, which serves to boost productivity – and some say, creativity. That’s because when light is detected, you don’t produce as much melatonin; instead, serotonin (its jollier hormone) steps in to elevate your mood.
For many years, researchers have examined the relationship between weather and temperament, noting that some people are more susceptible to weather changes than others. Those who are more vulnerable to experiencing a low mood during the cold, dark winter are said to have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
What You Can Do
To get around this, experts recommend taking steps to strengthen the brain’s resistance against mood changes in the winter, such as making sure to listen to “feel-good” music, exercising, meditating, or revisiting vacation photos – whatever lifts your mood. This helps you build resiliency to emotional clouds brought on by bad-tempered weather.
When the sun is out, however, you should take the opportunity to recharge your batteries. That is, shut down your computer and go out in the sun. (Wearing sunscreen, of course, and not baking into a crisp.) Getting a little sunlight is a natural way to store up on your serotonin, and instantly feel better. When summer is here, you have no excuse but to take advantage of it.
Oh, and speaking of natural ways to feel good, have you taken your ProVanax today? If you haven’t, hop to it.
And we’ll see you next time.