It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light– Aristotle.
Sweden is a special place – Snow, nature, clean air. But In the depths of winter, the days get shorter, the nights get longer and for those students who don’t get up until 1400, daylight is a luxury you don’t get much of. It can become dark, dreary and depressing. Like the dementors from Harry Potter, the darkness drains your happiness and leaves you feeling a little lost and empty inside. Now, I want to stress this isn’t true for everyone – but, for most of us (especially those from very sunny countries) it is a serious problem.
When it snows though, your surroundings get brighter, lighter and you feel happier, hopeful and filled with good vibes. This is why the University has provided a light room available to all students at Uppsala University, a place to sit, study or relax. In the student health centre on the top floor of Studentkår, the light room is open weekdays before 15. Before entering the room, you’re instructed to take of your shoes and replace them with slippers which, I noticed, were white. As you enter the light room, the first thing you notice is the white. It’s astonishingly white. The kind of white you wish your sheets could be if you ever knew how to wash them correctly. Hanging on coat racks were crisp white dressing gowns which we had to don over our regular clothes (presumably to mask any non-white colours we chose to wear that day). On the white floor sit white IKEA tables for your personal use. You can bring in laptops, books, friends, phones, whatever you like to keep you entertained. Around the room sit (shocker) white chairs and in the corners are fake white flowers.
My friend and I had originally decided to spend half an hour in the light room to feel whatever effects we could. We ended up spending an hour there and afterwards felt lighter and happier. I attempted to research the science behind light rooms, I had heard from people it helped with vitamin D, but couldn’t understand how. The reality seems to be that there are no real scientific reasons behind it. But I don’t want to diminish any real positive effects that people feel after going – placebo or not.
It’s worth going at least once to see if you feel anything 🙂