Have you been feeling down lately?: Weather and mood
There are some scientific links between weather and mood, especially on the negative impacts to our mood. And we're definitely in an area of the U.S. Where gloomy weather is rather constant. In fact, cities like Milwaukee, Chicago, Indy, and Columbus, Ohio are all in the top 10 for cloudiest cities in America, with only 2,000 to 2,500 hours of sunlight on average during the year.
So, if you're ever feeling like you're stressed out, too tired, or lethargic from the lack of sunshine well into spring, there are some things you can do to help! First off, turn more inside lights on! Even artificial light can help boost your serotonin levels, which has been linked to boosting your mood. Also, outdoor exercise helps quite a bit with a good rush of endorphins and fresh air.
Weather definitely has an impact on mood, and it even seems to occur in a cycle. I was able to quickly chat with a local psychologist in michiana about the changing weather and how may clients she speaks with. Dr. Wiinamaki tells me:
She also spoke with us last winter about how cold the cold and snow affects our mental well-being.
This cyclical nature is typically what we've found as meteorologists too. Last Sunday was a great day to get outside with sunshine and highs around 70 degrees and it seems like a bit of a letdown when more clouds and shower chances roll into the forecast.