Warm vs. Cold Weather People: How Climate Shapes Us

Have you ever noticed how people from different regions have distinct cultural behaviors? From punctuality to communication styles, these differences can be attributed to the climates they reside in.

Inspired by a viral video, the concept of warm-weather people versus cold-weather people was discussed, shedding light on the influence of climate on human culture.

This exploration will delve into the fascinating insights shared in the video and how climate shapes various aspects of human behavior.

Warm Weather People: Relaxed & Event-Based

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“So when it comes to human culture, there’s warm weather people and there’s cold weather people. Warm weather people… are event-based when it comes to time.”

In warm weather regions, such as Hawaii and Peru, a phenomenon known as “island time” prevails, reflecting a more relaxed approach to life.

The absence of harsh weather conditions enables individuals to adopt a leisurely attitude toward punctuality. Consequently, when asked about arrival times, it is common to receive responses like “whenever I feel like it.”

This relaxed perception of time in warm climates contributes to a laid-back lifestyle embraced by warm-weather people. The milder weather of warm regions allows for a greater emphasis on enjoying the present moment and being present in the experience rather than rushing from one event to another.

With fewer weather-related obstacles to contend with, warm weather people can afford to take their time, savoring the pleasures of life and embracing a slower pace.

The warm weather provides a backdrop supporting a more relaxed perception of time.

Cold Weather People: Time-Conscious & Urgent

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“In cold-weather environments, you have to be on time… you have to hurry up to the front of the line and say your order because there might be someone outside the deli who’s freezing to death if they don’t get inside quickly.”

The pressing need to navigate extreme conditions and potential dangers in cold-weather environments fosters a profound sense of urgency. The survival instinct kicks in, propelling individuals to prioritize punctuality and efficiency as essential tools for self-preservation.

Being on time takes on a new significance, as every passing moment increases the risk of succumbing to the biting cold. This urgency becomes particularly evident in everyday situations like standing in line or ordering at a deli, where swift actions can make the difference between life and death for someone exposed to freezing temperatures.

The awareness of this life-and-death situation compels individuals to hurry to the front of the line, ensuring they secure their spot and place their order promptly.

The shared understanding of the potential consequences of delay creates a community that values swift action and recognizes the urgency inherent in cold-weather environments.

Challenges & Health Implications

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Cold weather climates with little sunlight lead to vitamin D deficiencies and higher rates of depression. In warm weather climates, sometimes higher obesity rates.

Climate profoundly impacts human well-being, influencing nutrition, mental health, and physical conditions. Cold weather climates with limited sunlight pose a significant challenge regarding vitamin D deficiencies.

Regions like Scandinavia, where sunlight is scarce, often rely on artificial sources such as heat lamps and vitamin D supplements to ensure proper nutrition.

These measures are crucial as vitamin D is essential for bone health, immune function, and overall well-being. Additionally, extensive research has consistently linked cold weather climates to higher rates of depression.

The reduced sunlight in these regions disrupts serotonin levels in the brain, increasing the vulnerability to depressive disorders.

Conversely, warm weather climates present their own unique set of challenges, such as higher obesity rates. The combination of favorable weather conditions, abundant food availability, and a sedentary lifestyle contribute to this phenomenon.

In warmer regions, individuals may be more inclined to consume calorie-rich foods and engage in less physical activity due to the pleasant weather. These factors contribute to weight gain and an increased risk of obesity-related health issues.

Cultural Phenomena: “Island Madness” and “Going Postal”

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“Island madness’ in warm regions and ‘running amok’ in Asia and America reflect untreated mental health issues that can escalate, sometimes resulting in violence. In the US, a similar situation is called ‘going postal.’ Excessive sunlight in warm climates is linked to higher rates of skin cancer and premature aging.”

The phenomenon of ‘island madness’ and ‘running amok’ in warm weather regions in Asia and America reflects untreated mental health issues that can escalate to violence. Similarly, the term ‘going postal’ in the US describes similar occurrences.

Excessive sunlight in warm climates is linked to higher rates of skin cancer and premature aging. These observations emphasize the importance of addressing mental health issues and taking precautions against sun-related risks. Neglecting mental health can have severe consequences for individuals and communities.

It is crucial to prioritize mental health support and intervention. Sun safety practices, such as wearing protective clothing and sunscreen, are essential in regions with intense sunlight.

We can create environments that prioritize overall well-being by promoting mental health awareness and responsible sun exposure.

Viewers’ Opinions

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The comments from viewers further emphasize the cultural differences shaped by climate.

One viewer from the Nordic countries humorously mentions experiencing “sun anxiety,” where the fear of wasting good weather compels them to embrace the outdoors:

“Us in the Nordic countries literally get something ppl have named ‘sun anxiety’ where we feel like we’re wasting good weather if we stay inside ”

In cold climates, efficiency and urgency are paramount, as another commenter notes the need to swiftly finish tasks and retreat to artificial warmth or risk freezing:

“Cold climates be quick to finish your task and get back to artificial warmth or freeze, in warm climates slow down otherwise you overheat and die.”

On the other hand, warmer climates like Gabon, Africa, boast abundant food growth and a relaxed approach to punctuality, as shared by a viewer from there:

“I’m from Gabon, Africa. It is warm here, so food can grow pretty much without much help, and people never show up on time. I’ve said this sooo much.”

How The Climate Shapes Us

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Image Credit: YanLev Alexey/Shutterstock.

Climate profoundly influences human cultures, particularly in areas like social structures and norms, religious beliefs, and food practices. Climate can dictate agricultural practices, with certain crops thriving in specific climates, shaping local diets and culinary traditions. [1]

For example, wine-making cultures often arise in regions with suitable climates. Similarly, climate shapes religious and spiritual beliefs, with many cultures creating rituals and festivals tied to seasonal changes or weather phenomena.

Climate can influence societal organization; nomadic societies often develop in response to changing weather patterns. However, climate is not the sole determinant of cultural practices—other factors like geography, history, technology, and intercultural interactions also play significant roles.

Human resilience and creativity have led to diverse adaptations and rich cultural expressions across various climates despite these influences.[2]

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This article was produced and syndicated by Viral Chatter.

  1. annualreviews.org/doi/10.1146/annurev-publhealth-031816-044356
  2. agenda21culture.net/sites/default/files/report_10_-_culture_and_climate_resilient_development_-_en.pdf
@andrewtoworld Replying to @verbile The differences between warm weather culture and cold weather culture #culture #anthropology #sociology #climate #educational ♬ original sound – Andrxw


Martha A. Lavallie
Martha A. Lavallie
Author & Editor | + posts

Martha is a journalist with close to a decade of experience in uncovering and reporting on the most compelling stories of our time. Passionate about staying ahead of the curve, she specializes in shedding light on trending topics and captivating global narratives. Her insightful articles have garnered acclaim, making her a trusted voice in today's dynamic media landscape.