Like most New Yorkers, I think I have had enough rain in the past month to last for the rest of the year. So far, in the entire month of June, we’ve only had 3 days without rain. And if you go back further, there have been only a handful of dry days in the last 3 months. And cold! Average temperatures for the area are far below normal.
Wet. Cold. Gray. A perfect formula for depression.
The local weather looks like it was designed for one of those commercials for an anti-depressant medication. (Ever notice how the weather improves in those commercials, right after they introduce the product?)
There is a great amount of research out there about the connection between mood and weather and I definitely see it in my practice. Since my clients and I are always out in the weather, it is typically the first topic of any therapy session.
Since it looks like there may be no end in sight – I thought it might be helpful to pass along some tips for combating those bad weather blues.
1. Find the beauty in it. If there were no cloudy days – we would never appreciate the sun. Take a moment and really absorb the beauty of rain and the awesomeness of storms. They can be quite breath taking!
2. Focus on the positive and surround yourself with positive people. Enough already with the complainers and negative talk about the weather. Focusing on the clouds just make them worse and allows depression to feed on itself.
3. Turn on the lights. Now, I may be the ‘greenest’ therapist in the world (no office, no electricity, etc) and I really believe in being eco-friendly. But, Edison invented the light bulb for a reason! Use it. Blasting the lights a few hours to combat those blues won’t sink the planet, and it might just give you a pick me up.
4. Get out there! You wont melt – get outside and move around. If you know anything about me – I’m a big proponent for moving your body and using that mind / body connection.
5. Finally, realize that there is a strong connection between the gray weather and your bad mood. That realization can be powerful. It tells you that there is a reason for your lethargy and grumpiness. And it tells you that it is temporary. Don’t be a victim to the weather. Make a conscious choice to focus on the positive and improve your mood.