Today is the last Friday in October, the last Friday before Halloween, which means tonight is Howl at the Moon Night. If you’re a fan of Twilight, or any of the vampire franchises, this may be old news to you, and you’ll be all excited and prepared for this night already. On the other hand, if (like me), the whole vampire scene fails to move you, you can always take this opportunity to get rid of some pent-up frustration by indulging in a good holler once the moon appears over the horizon. I’m not suggesting the whole primal therapy trip that was so popular in the early 70s – all I’m saying is that a good yell, howl, holler or scream can do wonders for your stress levels, and if there’s a day (or night) giving you the perfect opportunity to let it rip, why not?
Of course, unless you work the night shift, you’re unlikely to be at work when the yelling starts. Which is a pity, given that a study reported in The Independent indicates that freely expressing anger in the workplace is a good way of keeping your heart healthy. Apparently, people who suffer in silence after unfair treatment at work have twice the risk of dying from heart disease compared to those who vent their anger. Researchers from the University of Stockholm followed 2755 male workers for a period of 13 years, from 1990 to 2003, measuring their blood pressure, body mass index and cholesterol levels, and related this to their coping mechanisms at work. After correcting for biological factors, they found those who bottled up their anger had higher blood pressure and were twice as likely to suffer from heart disease. Studies on women showed similar trends, though not as pronounced as their male counterparts.
The value of a good yell is widely acknowledged. American psychiatrist Dr Peter Calafiura says that yelling can have a positive mental influence. It triggers endorphins, resulting in a natural high, and a generally good feeling. This is very similar to the well-known runner’s high, so perhaps today is a good day to skip your post-work run and rather have a howl at the moon – it should result in an equally good mood!
Happy howling, everyone! A-hooooooooooooooooooooo!