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Elizabeth Scott, M.S.

The Upside of Daylight Saving Time

By March 10, 2014

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For as long as I can remember, when the topic of Daylight Saving Time has come up in conversation, people have complained about that lost hour in March. While many of us aren't thrilled with the current reality of losing an hour from our weekend, those of us who participate in Daylight Saving Time have no choice--we're either in, or we're an hour late to work, school, or whatever we have going on in our lives.

However, as with any situation we can't really control, we still have choices. One choice here is to let our inner optimists come out, and look on the bright side of the situation. Using reframing techniques to see the positives in this situation can help us feel happier and less frustrated about it, even if we're working in a state of sleep deprivation.

I was able to count a few positives to Daylight Saving Time:

  • The intended benefit of DST is to shift the amount of daylight we have in a way that makes it fit more conveniently with our lifestyles. This can work in our favor right now, in that we now have an extra hour of daylight in the afternoon, and our daylight hours will stretch about a minute further each day until Summer. This leaves many of us with more daylight hours on the weekends (when we'll perhaps be sleeping in and missing the extra morning darkness anyway), and provides some of us with extra time after work or school to enjoy being outside. Some of us are already experiencing beautiful Spring-like weather, and many more of us will soon--perfect for a walk before dinner for those who can schedule it in, or a little extra time outside with kids.

  • This gives us an opportunity to take stock in our lives. Realizing how important just one hour is, we might review our schedules and see if there are any activities we're doing that are just taking up time and energy, and not serving us well, and we might be inspired to eliminate these drains. Seeing how much we miss an extra hour of sleep, we might be inspired to do what it takes to get better sleep starting now. The hassle of DST might just prove to be an inspiration.

  • We'll all find ourselves with an extra hour of weekend in the Fall! As much as many people hate the idea of losing that precious hour of weekend time now, most of us will thoroughly appreciate the extra hour when it's returned to us in the Fall. At least it always comes back!

Care to add to the list? What are some positives you see today? Please add them to the comments section, and feel free to share this blog with those who need an extra boost today, via the 'share' button. Thanks!

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Comments
March 15, 2010 at 8:14 am
(1) Zan says:

I cannot understand why they jack with the time at this time of year. the days are getting longer anyway. if they want to fool with our time, mess with it from sept to february. but leave the longer days alone. for people who have to be at work for 7 am – we are losing valuable sleep time. we get up an hour earlier and go to bed an hour later – so that is two hours of lost sleep. it does not make any sense.

March 15, 2010 at 8:46 am
(2) musicbones/hotstatrat says:

Why doesn’t the government leave it up to the individual (person, school, or company, etc.) to shape their day to the daylight – instead of forcing all of us to have an off kilter measurement of time – and go through the trouble of adjusting all our clocks and watches twice a year)?

Here is another danger: skin cancer. With DST, people will be confused about when are the peak hours of UV penetration.

Oh, you want something positive? It places us North Americans closer to the start of the business day, which for practical purposes starts 13 hours ahead of us in Japan.

March 15, 2010 at 9:03 am
(3) Jo says:

I believe we should stay on daylight savings time all year long. At least then we could drive home in the daylight in the winter.

March 15, 2010 at 1:03 pm
(4) Pat says:

I was fine with daylight savings time the way it was – sort of, It’s kind of stupid when you think about it – it doesn’t really benefit anyone. but what really irritates me is the dunderheeads who came up with this last idiocy to tinker with it to “spring forward” a month earler and “fall back” later with the big lie that we’d save all this enerfy. (The politician responsible is from my own sorry state, so mea culpa.) Why are people so gullable? All this does is mess with our internal clocks and cause additional stree we don’t need. It makes me mad twice a year, and takes a few days to rebel and then get over it. Sigh!

March 15, 2010 at 1:29 pm
(5) momss says:

Oh please, it’s an hour! Nobody gets sleep deprivation from losing one hour of sleep one night a year. Are you saying you never go to a movie or a party or some other social event and stay up past your normal bedtime?? I personally love the extra daylight we are now getting. It helps my mood much more than losing an hours sleep dampens it. If anything they should just leave it and forget about “falling back”.

March 15, 2010 at 3:14 pm
(6) TOM says:

I never lost my hour of sleep this year. My clock stayed on Eastern Daylight Time all winter long. It worked great for me. I am not going to change my clock back for only 4 months of the year. Why do I need a different time just for winter. Either keep DST(will settle) for Standard Time (Preferred to me) year round.

March 16, 2010 at 9:17 pm
(7) Rae says:

Oh come on people! Quit complaining and get over it! It’s only and hour and it’s not like it really messes with your schedule either. The primary reason for DST is to try to conserve energy. The government wouldn’t have everyone reset their clocks twice a year just for laughs. I personally think you should just shut up, and put up. Seriously, it is not like this creeps up and surprises us every year. DST only happens twice a year, thats more than any holiday. I bet you do not see people complaining like this: “UGH Christmas is here AGAIN. Its SO annoying having to think of others instead of just ourselves!”

At least DST has a good, free, use/cause. You can use that extra hour and get out and exercise, i hear that improves your perspective on life.

For all you complainers, read this. [You do have an extra hour now.] http://www.webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/c.html

March 19, 2010 at 10:17 am
(8) Vince of Illinois says:

Actually, the day DST starts is one of my favorite days. Why? Because it fights and minimizes one of the worst parts of winter. We all hate winter’s cold, but I really hate the fact that during winter, the sun sets around 5 pm.
When DST starts the sun goes from setting at 6 to 7 pm. Now think about it. Don’t you like the idea of sunshine at 6:45 pm????? Thanks to Daylight Savings Time (DST) that’s we have RIGHT NOW!

November 1, 2010 at 8:53 am
(9) Ann says:

I agree with the thousands of people who say that we should stay on DST all year round and then leave the clocks alone. No falling back! In the autumn I appreciate the extra morning light at first but it doesn’t last so I’d rather have the evening light for as long as possible. Also, apparently children come home from school alone much more often than they go to school alone, so it would be better for them to have maximum light at the end of the day.

March 11, 2011 at 6:15 pm
(10) verby says:

As a school bus driver I really dislike taking kids home in the dark in the winter. Leave the time at daylight savings time- and this avoids the whole argument. And I can’t stand the concept of losing an hour sleep. I barely get enough sleep during the week as it is, so taking one hour from me on the weekend seems criminal.

March 11, 2012 at 4:26 pm
(11) Lew says:

Someone said “get over it”. Why SHOULD we get over it? It’s annoying and it’s an easy fix! Change the stupid law and be done with it. Why haven’t the politicians done away with this already? Is money involved or something?

March 14, 2012 at 11:17 am
(12) Eric says:

Wow these other people commenting aren’t that bright it seems.
Daylight Saving Time makes sense. If there was ever to be a change, I’d say shift the time halfway, and never change it again. Like in the fall,turn the clocks backwards half an hour, and keep it that way, so we wouldn’t have to worry about it again.
But that is just a thought. I don’t really have an issue with any of it. I started planning, a few days before Daylight Saving Time began, going to bed earlier, and I have followed with it since then. I have felt a little tired in the mornings, even though I got 8 hours of sleep. But then I think about it.., I enjoy that I can be outside longer in the evening, which is the only time I can get out.

May 31, 2012 at 12:14 am
(13) Elisa says:

Well they changed it last year so now DST statrs on the second Sunday of March, which was three weeks earlier than in the past, and it ends on the first Sunday of November, one week later than in years past. So now we have 8 out of 12 months on DST I wish they would just pick one and stick with it.

October 17, 2012 at 8:46 pm
(14) Greg says:

I think it’s a good idea. I don’t mind dark mornings. (It’s even interesting to see a winter sunrises when I getting up). But the benefit of it-later evenings. I am pretty sure everyone don’t like when it’s dark at 5 p.m.!
I can’t imagine what will be if winter time will be all year long. Sunrises in the middle of the night and darkness at 8 p.m. on June! It’s nonsense! That’s why summer time all year is good. Especially in Tel-Aviv. I just can’t understand why they are putting back their clocks? They have a sunset at 4:36 in December. But why? Better to have sunset at 5:36 especially that their sunrise will not be late even on DST at December. Around 7:40 I believe!

November 5, 2012 at 8:20 am
(15) Dee Ralston says:

I personally HATE the time change. In the winter the day light hours automatically start getting shorter any way. Getting dark an hour earlier stinks for everyone…people come home from work in the dark…no more time for anything outside! And having the sun rise at 5 am pretty much benefits no one! If one of the presidential candidates would say they would stop this nonsense, I would go vote for them tomorrow! lol

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