The Science Behind Gloomy Weather & Moods
While the incoming holiday seasons are times of celebration for many, for others it can be a time of stress and difficulty. When the weather gets colder and snow starts to pile up during autumn and winter, some find it to be quite somber for a number of reasons. For example: it can be more difficult to go out for their usual activities or to see loved ones.
Others, however, may also find themselves inexplicably more somber, sluggish or sad this season for reasons they aren’t quite sure of. But why is that?
It's in the sunlight
There is an actual scientific theory as to why gloomier weather can result in gloomier moods, and that theory begins with a part of our brain called the hypothalamus. Located towards the base of our brain along the undersurface, the hypothalamus controls the output of hormones in our body, including serotonin and melatonin which are very important to our everyday mood.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that carries messages from one nerve cell to another in your brain and body. It’s also known as the “happy chemical” since increased levels in serotonin are linked feeling good and living longer. Melatonin is a hormone your brain releases when it’s nighttime, making you sleepy and maintaining your natural circadian rhythm (our internal clock, essentially).
When the season changes, it affects the amount of sunlight we receive. Between summer to autumn to winter, nighttime comes earlier while daylight is shorter, if not sparser. This change in the amount of sunlight we receive affects the production of both serotonin and melatonin. Our internal clock is thrown out of its usual pattern, making us sleepier and have less energy from day to day which can affect our mental health.
Mental Health = Physical Health
Understanding our physical needs is just as important as acknowledging our mental needs. If this is a time of much frustration for you, take it easy on yourself. It’s vital to slow down, take a breath from the holiday rush, and check in with yourself from time to time. Most importantly: practice self-care when you can.
Self-care is a practice. It’s actively making changes to your lifestyle, adopting healthier habits while dropping bad ones, which can be easier said than done. Choosing to be kind to yourself is a decision one has to make every day. However, all of it is well worth it.
Seeking activities that bring you happiness while nourishing both mind and soul is important. You can take up a new hobby you’ve always wanted to try, start a journal to encourage introspection, or learn a new language. You can even start smaller. Even the simple acts of warm baths and facemasks may not look like much, but participating in a skincare and/or haircare routine is a good mood booster.
Giving your skin and hair extra attention isn’t just for vanity, but for your overall health too. After all: hair/skincare is self-care! Developing a routine and making time to listen and tend to your appearance can go a long way in boosting your own self-confidence and further encouragement to take on other healthier habits. Mental health goes hand in hand with physical health. You’ll also need to make sure you’re using the right products.
We at Sudtana take pride in our vegan, all-natural products. With organically grown ingredients, we bring the pure, inherent power of botanicals straight to you. Completely chemical free, worry-free, and compromise free. Each product is scientifically determined to be safe and gentle for all types of skin and hair. Perfect for any season. Perfect for bringing out the best version of you.
If there is one celebration you can be sure to make this season, it’s to celebrate you, your physical, and emotional health. Stay warm, and stay grounded.