For anyone who was around last weekend over July 4th you may have noticed that there wasn’t a soul on the roads – no one around. It was immensely quiet. Perhaps many folks ventured to the shore points or to visit family. Regardless, it was desolate in the Philadelphia area. There was a palpable “hush” that was much like the stillness that settles in later in the night on Christmas Eve.
A friend of mine who is also a healthcare professional routinely comments about how we are communal beings and tend to share a common biorhythm – That we are “plugged into each other.”
We were talking about how eerily quiet it was on the holiday weekend – That people did not seem to migrate to the fireworks until the last minute and that even the local ice cream stand was vacant of patrons until late into the evening.
Why would this be the case? Well, we as living beings are very much affected by our environment. Over the course of the last year, we have endured constant pressure from extreme weather. The winter was relentless with one-snow storm after another with intense cold and ice. The rain storms have been no better. When we anticipate storms, we have come to expect to be left without power for days and or to anticipate damages. This is hard to endure as a steady diet. Perhaps, there is a collective feeling of “burnout” in the atmosphere. Maybe we haven’t recuperated.
We had been desperate for warm weather and the ease of summer, but perhaps the heat and humidity of late has introduced yet another extreme to rally against and accommodate. Extremes zap us of our energy. The intensity of extreme conditions can create distress in our bodies and minds – more than what we would imagine. For instance, over the winter you may have noticed yourself getting more tired, cranky, low energy and impatient as the snow storms continued – Due to being tapped of energy and resilience being worn down. Heat and humidity can be equally as damaging to energy and vitality.
For those who suffer mood problems and chronic illness, such as depression, pain syndromes, ADD, etc., you may find yourself more irritable and cycling or dipping mood-wise unexpectedly despite the sunshine and longer days. Heat can also fuel aggression. Be on the lookout for subtle and not so subtle changes in your thinking, emotions and behavior.
Do make sure to keep hydrated, drinking plenty of water. Eat healthily and veer away from quick unhealthy meals because you may not feel like cooking. Maintain exercise – perhaps swim or take a late night walk after the sun goes down. Overall, maintain structure and routine
Moreover, of course, remember that this too shall pass. Most importantly, bear in mind that the conditions around us are impacting us on a deeper level.