It's that time of the year again.
Clocks have been set back an hour, trees have begun to lose their leaves, days are getting shorter, nights are becoming longer, and the temperature is slowly decreasing. I'm not complaining though. A year or two ago I may have, but this time, I greatly look forward to the cold, dark months of winter.
I'm a long time sufferer of what is known as "seasonal affective disorder". Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD (a perfect acronym), goes by a few other names such as winter depression, winter blues, or seasonal depression. In other words, the cold can make me unhappy; an odd statement coming from a guy who was so eager to visit Alaska and Iceland during the summer months.
The cycle goes a little something like this:
Daylight savings time ends and the days get shorter.
I become lethargic.
Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's roll around.
I become optimistic.
The new year begins.
I spend the next four months questioning my life and every single decision I've ever made.
Sounds fun, doesn't it?
I'm exaggerating of course. However, there is a large feeling of melancholy that comes with the chilly northeast climate. I tend to not look forward to most things and I would much rather take a nap than go out somewhere with a group of friends. There is a noticeable difference in my mood and it's a difference that I don't particularly enjoy.
This year is going to be different though.
Nighttime is my favorite time of the day. It's when I'm at my most creative, my most productive, and my most inspired. With about 13 hours of darkness per day, why wouldn't I look forward to the sun setting so early?
I also don't mind the cold. Perhaps it stems from the same reason why I love sadness. The cold months make the warm months that much more enjoyable.
Winter is a time when life tends to slow down. With less going on, why not seize the occasion? If you're a creative individual like myself, look at the winter months as a time of great opportunity. It's a time to learn that instrument you've always wanted to learn, a time to write that book you've always wanted to write, a time to compose that song you've always wanted to compose. Don't let the change in weather discourage you, use it to your advantage.
This winter, I hope to spend many cold nights working on all of the concepts I currently have swirling around in my head: music ideas, film projects, and that book I'm already about 20 pages into.
I can hardly wait to wrap a blanket around myself, sit down with a cup of tea, put on a quiet piece of music, and get to work.
I hope you'll join me.