Find your Sunny Spot at Northwestern

The winter months can be a bit challenging for all of us as it gets darker earlier and temperatures dip. You may get to that point where you try to stay in doors for as long as possible under the blankets. As you try to avoid the cold, you may also be avoiding natural sunlight which has a positive affect on our mood and motivations. We've done some research to find "sunny" spots on campus where you can bask in natural light without risking the cold. 

Why are we talking about "sunny' spots?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) affects 1/2 a million people every winter in the United States, peaking between December and February. SAD is a mood disorder associated with depression, related to seasonal variations of light. One of the best ways to minimize the impact of SAD is to spend time in environments that are sunny and bright, such as spaces with natural light.

Symptoms may include:

  • Major depression
  • Anxiety
  • Mood changes
  • Irritability
  • Social withdrawal
  • Increased oversleeping and fatigue
  • Increased appetite and weight gain

"Sunny" Spots at Northwestern

Below you'll find some "sunny" spots on campus, indoor spaces that provide great natural light or indoor stress relievers. Of course, these spots are not the only way to minimize the impact of SAD. It is always helpful to chat with someone about your experiences, like your PA, RA, or by contacting NU Listens. And, as always, CAPS continues to be a helpful resource. 

South Campus

North Campus

  • Ford 
    Space on any floor gives you access to outdoor lighting and group work areas
  • Henry Crown
    Exercise means endorphins and endorphins are feel goods, whether you hit up group exercise classes or the treadmill
  • Silverman Hall Commons Area
  • Pancoe 1st or 2nd Floor
    Silverman and Pancoe are next to each other near Annenberg; the huge windows bring in lots of light, views of the lake and campus, and are close to the hidden Einstein's