HOW WEATHER AFFECTS OUR MOODS
Does the weather affect your mood, how you feel, think, behave, your outlook on life? It sure does mine. Oh how I love a sunny day, mild, low humidity, gentle breeze, lots of sunshine. I feel perky, happy, have lots of energy and nothing seems to really bother me all that much even when things don’t always go as I hoped they would and bad things happen. I can get through them a whole lot easier on a sunny day.
I used to work in a convalescent center, worked there for several years through all seasons and types of weather. Now I don’t profess to know all the scientific reasons behind this phenomena but I can tell you this, weather definitely had a major effect on those patients and the patience of their caregivers. Give us a damp, chill rainy day and our moods were sour, a little on the musty side, not very pleasant or healthy. We grumped and groaned about our jobs and were inclined to drag our feet more on those days. We never seemed able to accomplish a whole lot other than the real basic necessities that went with our job. We had many more call outs on those days. It seems to give folks serious headaches or some other ailment that mysteriously went away as soon as their shift was covered. Nothing seemed to elevate our moods. Not even pizza or chocolate would help.
If we were feeling out of sorts you know for sure the patients were. There were ten times as many complaints. Patients were tearful, blue and wanted our undivided attention. They wouldn’t eat. They fought taking their medications. They were cranky and out of sorts too. It didn’t make for a good day for any of us; and if you think this sort of day was a bad day, try one that is gloomy, damp and chilled with a full moon as well. It was one disaster after another on those days; no laughing matter and no joke, seriously, the weather effects our moods no matter how old or young, sick or well we may be.
Have you ever noticed your kids misbehave more (unless of course you are one to always give them their own way) on a miserable, rainy and chilled day? You know it is so even for those of us who don’t mind so much and are willing to bundle up, go walking in the rain and run through puddles like a bunch of daffy ducks. You know it is going to happen; Johnny is going to stomp extra hard in a puddle and splash Suzie all over and she is going to burst into tears and the battle is on. So much for distraction and a little unconventional fun.
I have arthritis, an incurable joint disease. There is seldom a day I don’t experience stiffness and some degree of pain. It is not something pleasant to have or to live with day in and day out. It hurts and it is disabling for some extremely disabling. There are days when I hurt so badly I don’t even want to get out of bed say nothing of getting dressed and facing the business of the day. As I am typing this, I now am only able to type with just two fingers. My finger joints lock and cramp and I no longer have the dexterity I once had. It’s getting worse but I am lucky to be able to do what I do each day. I keep telling my body it can and it will and I make adjustments where I have to. It is more difficult for me to walk, especially on uneven surfaces or for long distances. When I am sitting I can not turn left or right to the degree I used to be able to and I have trouble moving my legs from one position to another. These daily aggravations are caused by arthritis. All this is a whole lot worse on a damp, chill day and believe it or not on a hot day when the humidity is high. The weather very much effects how I live my life from day to day and when I am really hurting so is my mood. There are days, lots of days when I could chew boards and spit six-penny nails
Lots of things have an effect on my arthritis; diet, exercise, various other illnesses, like the flu or those nasty winter colds, heat, cold, the humidity, barometric pressure. It sounds silly, I know, but it is a fact. I can predict the weather as well or better than the weatherman most days and know three day ahead of time when we have a storm moving in. I’m right more times than the weatherman. So is most everyone else who has arthritis.
I’m on the slippery side of old and basically retired now but I do work part-time as a substitute teacher in our schools.
I often get to work with challenged children. I love them and I enjoy working with them but invariably when the day is gray and rainy that is the day they will have a meltdown and nothing much really gets accomplished. I also sometimes teach in the regular classrooms and when it is not a very friendly day outside, it is not a very friendly day inside either. The class is antsy, inattentive, they whine and distract each other and it is not as easy to be in control of 20 students and get the lesson done.
There are more highway accidents, road rage, on these days. There are more cases of domestic violence on these kinds of days. There are more deaths to suicide on these gray, chill, gloomy days. I don’t understand; know the scientific reasons behind it but people just aren’t as well on a gray day. It’s a fact. I know it is so from person experience.
Oh how I love a sunny day, mild, low humidity, gentle breeze, lots of sunshine. I feel perky, happy, have lots of energy and nothing seems to really bother me all that much even when things don’t always go as I hoped they would and bad things happen. I can get through them a whole lot easier on a sunny day; and that is a fact too. Weather definitely affects our moods, whether we are haveing a good day or a bad day. Folks laugh about it, make jokes about it, even doctors do, but in truth it is no laughing matter. Weather really does effect our mood.