You may have already noticed how daylight can make you feel. Your joy at the sunrise. Your smile as the sun dapples your skin. And similarly, you may have instinctively started to use daylight to enhance your wellbeing. Whether that’s warding off the Winter blues with a stroll in the park or lifting your mood by moving your desk by the window, into natural light.
This isn’t a new phenomenon. Humans have been biologically hardwired to respond to natural light since before we were even recognisably human. Our circadian rhythms are established when we are just a few weeks old and the natural and predictable interplay of night and day go on to define our lives in their entirety. With this in mind, it’s no wonder that the amount of daylight we are exposed to has a direct correlation with our wellbeing.
Multiple scientific studies have highlighted health issues that arise when our natural circadian rhythms are interfered with, through artificial interruptions in our natural light and dark patterns. Whether this is being kept away from natural light through the built environment, or over exposed to artificial electric light, scientists say some of the possible consequences can include poor sleep, mood changes, decreased cognitive performance, reduced communication skills and a higher risk of disease.
Let’s take a look at how you can let more daylight into your life...
Our Top 5 Natural Light Wellness Tips
1. Keep your daylight levels up in darker months by going for a walk outside at lunch time.
2. Whether it’s changing up your curtains or remodelling a room, think about ways you can bring more natural light into your home, design your space around daylight.
3. If you rent your home, look for properties that already have great natural light.
4. Open your curtains or blinds as soon as you wake to let the natural light. Even a few minutes extra daylight will help you have a better start to the day.
5. At work, request a desk with good natural light if possible and even if you’re stuck in an area away from the window, get away from your desk regularly to go into better lit parts of the office, and choose well-lit meeting rooms to enhance your daylight exposure.