If you're like most Americans, you abhor the annual ritual of turning the clocks back in November, marking the start of a dark and dreary winter. With the sun setting as early as 4:30 PM in the middle of the season, wintertime is correlated with less positive moods, less productivity, and less physical activity. Standard time from November to March is a detrimental concept that should be replaced with permanent daylight savings time all year round.
Seasonal affective disorder (ironically acronymed SAD), which occurs when we are not exposed to enough sunlight, presents like typical clinical depression. It has symptoms such as loss of energy, moodiness, persistent sadness, apathy, irritability, lack of concentration, etc. Most people are affected by it to various degrees, but some can experience it so severely that it triggers thoughts of suicide. Making daylight savings time permanent would provide us with an extra hour of sunlight in the evenings, and would be the most effective therapy for those with SAD. The lack of sunlight and co-occurring symptoms of SAD, including lack of energy and concentration, results in significantly less productivity at school and work, costing companies millions of dollars a year. Fatigue and laziness, which is also correlated with standard time, results in less exercise in the wintertime as well. The extra time in the evening allows for more outdoor recreation time, which has been found to correlate with increased health.
The switch between daylight savings time and standard was first implemented during WWI in order to save energy by having people spend more time outdoors and less time using electricity indoors. Other benefits found since then include less crime and fewer traffic injuries. The lost hour of sleep that negatively impacts productivity and health the day after the time change in March can even be abolished when seasonal time changing ends, and daylight savings time is applied throughout the year. Many states have already begun proposing bills to outlaw standard time (Florida's Sunshine Protection Act has a fitting name), and President Trump has announced his support as well. If all goes as planned, we may not have to change our clocks this November.