I was just reading my lovely friend Caroline’s blog about autumn in Montreal, expressing her lack of motivation, low spirits, etc; in the midst of grey skies and rainy days. I was suddenly reminded of exactly how I felt… oh, 4 months ago, in the midst of grey skies and rainy days, here in Wellington, while (nearly) the rest of the world was enjoying a glorious summertime.
I don’t know if rain-related hum-drums exactly qualify as “Seasonal Affective Disorder”, but it’s certainly true that the weather can affect one’s mood. Sunshine in particular has an effect on the melatonin levels in the brain. A lack of exposure to sunlight often results in lowered mood levels. Scientists think the evolutionary causes for these lowered mood levels stem from scarcity of foods available in colder months, as people in depressed moods are less likely to exert themselves physically, thereby require fewer calories, etc. In addition, scientists suggest that the above-average prevalence of such seasonal depression in women may have a link to reproductive cycles.
If the grey skies have you down, despite the cold, and rain, try to get some fresh air. Being outside will invigorate you, and even that little bit of exposure to the sun may help to lift your spirits.
Sitting here at my desk on a beautiful spring morning, looking at the sunshine filling Holloway Road, I can’t help but feel good. It’s finally warm and sunny in Wellington! Hooray for springtime!!!