A recent study commissioned by mineral water brand Chaudfontaine has thrown light on the impact of the changing seasons on the moods and stress levels of Belgians. The study reveals that during the cooler seasons of autumn and winter, a significant 68% of Belgians feel a drop in their daily enjoyment while 40% experience an uptick in stress levels.
Autumn and Winter Blues
Along with the drop in temperatures, these months also see a rise in feelings of being overwhelmed and irritable for 30% of the population. What's more, 36% find it difficult to unwind and relax during these months. This is attributed to the fact that the natural pace of life tends to slow down during this period. However, the human-created world often sees an increase in workload due to year-end deadlines, thus raising the risk of burnout and fatigue.
Slowing Down as a Coping Mechanism
Well-being specialist Anne Everard, author of 'BOOSTEZ,' recommends adopting a slower pace of life during these darker days. Her sentiment resonates with 74% of Belgians who find pleasure in cocooning and slowing down during autumn and winter. Socializing through long evenings with loved ones and enjoying extended culinary experiences at restaurants also emerges as a preferred activity during these seasons, with 25% of Belgians eating out more frequently.
Combating Stress: The Three Pillars
To combat stress, Everard proposes three pillars: adequate sleep, physical activity, and indulging in autumn and winter cuisine. She emphasizes the importance of incorporating colorful and varied dishes in one's diet. Aligning with this, Chaudfontaine's study reveals that 75% of Belgians enjoy indulging in elaborate meals during these seasons. In a bid to promote this, the mineral water brand, in collaboration with Gault & Millau, is highlighting eight Belgian chefs known for creating high-quality culinary experiences for their Slow Tour initiative.
The findings of the study underscore the importance of aligning our pace with that of nature and understanding that slowing down, especially during the colder months, is not just a luxury, but a necessity.