In Winter, most animals slow down and take it easy. They hibernate or at least hang out in their home a little more. Humans aren’t really different, we should also slow down. I remember reading a study many years ago looking at seasonal affective disorder (SAD) among the Inuit. There was a hypothesis that the Inuit don’t get SAD because of some genetic adaptation to living in a place that gets dark for so long. But Inuit people that move to town and start living more like us get SAD just like we do–there goes the genetics idea! The Inuit, like the animals, slow down, sleep more, work less, hang out with friends and family more, and go out into any sun they can.
We have been working on our slowing down as well. We were inspired by the gals over at Eight Owls Farmstead and Ian at the Unitarian church here in Brevard to turn off our electric lights, computers, and devices in the evenings until December 21st, the winter solstice. Check out Ian’s sermon here. The low light of candles gets us sleeping better and more, getting up with the sun, and hanging out with each other more. We’ve been feeling great with it, though I’m definitely getting behind on politics (Thank God) without Youtube in the evenings. This change in lifestyle has a profound effect on our hormones getting our stress hormones like cortisol and our sleep hormones like melatonin working with the season so we can sleep at night, be awake in the day, and feeling good with it all.
This has also been a great opportunity for us to learn a new skill. We don’t love paraffin wax candles since they are a petroleum product and don’t smell that great. But beeswax candles are a bit expensive. So we decided to make our own. Alex can show you how it’s done with his great video.
How do you cope with the darkness and the cold of winter?