I don’t really believe in coincidence that is the reason I am writing about the weather today. Last Friday I was thinking about our strange Dutch weather and posted about it on my Facebook wall, not 10 minutes later I came across an article about the relationship between weather and moods. Now that was too big a coincidence to pass up.
Is there a coincidence between the weather and our moods? Some people think there is, some think there isn’t. I belong to the group who think there is. Why otherwise do people get winter depression? [And as my friend Vilma Kuzmiene told me summer depression as well] As soon as the days get longer, some people start to feel down.
I can think of the following reasons [both physical and psychological]:
• We need sunlight [vitamins] to stay healthy and as the sun loses its strength we lose the vitamins.
• Women can feel less mobile during the winter months. If you don’t like going out in the dark you are housebound many hours of the day in winter.
• The cold can affect your muscles making them stiff and painful.
• Staying warm despite the cold takes up energy.
But as Vilma said there are reasons for summer depression as well:
• Constant heat for sometimes weeks or months on end can make people prickly.
• Heat can make people sick, especially the elderly and people with physical problems. Fighting the heat takes energy.
For those who live closer to poles mid winter and midsummer can play havoc on the system. There will be weeks were there is no darkness or no light. Our system needs the clue that the sun gives us, to tell us when it is time to go to sleep and to wake up.
How does this all affect me?
My moods are not affected much by the temperature. I have to admit that I do love the long evenings in summer, when I find it easier to set out on my own. I used to be a person who loved spring and fall and did not like the extremes of summer at all. Until about 6 years ago I began to notice that a good, warm summer gave me a lot of reserves for the winter. My muscles soak up the heat and store that energy. So my body still dislikes the heat [I find it hard to concentrate when the temperature reaches 30 C and above] my mind is now much more motivated to endure it and even enjoy the benefits. Is was very interesting for me to observe that change. Last year we had no summer to speak of here and I am beginning to notice it. That meant it was time to take care of myself. In February I will be spending a week in Lanzarote to soak up some sun.
Please tell me about you. Does the weather affect your moods or your health? And what do you do to stay on top of it?