I am not a winter person.
I am a born and raised Canadian who until a few years ago could quite happily never experience another Canadian winter again. So how did I convince myself to embrace the grey, snowy, freeze yourself to the bone weather? I made an investment in three things.
1. Brighten Your Day
It's the grey skies, mornings without sunshine streaming in, weeks with only a few hours outdoors that put me in a funk. Last year a friend of mine, who might just be the biggest winter grinch I know, told me her secret to beating the winter blues is a Happy Light. A what? It's an easy, noninvasive, non-pharma light treatment, that you turn on while reading, sitting at your desk working or even enjoying your morning coffee. It's magical, just 30 minutes a day provides intense Natural Spectrum light that mimics daylight which in turn lightens your mood, gives you more engery and it can alleviate the symptoms of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) during the shorter hours of daylight, keeping those winter blues away. I've been using my HappyLight Liberty 10k by Verilux for the past few weeks and I honestly am enjoying it so much I think I'll pick up a few as Christmas presnts for friends and family too, they are only $99 at Costco.ca.
2. Dress for Success
Living in the city I don't think I was ever really dressed properly for winter. I dressed more for running from the car to a meeting, the grocery store or right back into my house. When we moved to the country we spent a lot more time outside and we also discovered the huge difference the right winter gear can make to enjoying winter. Let me just tell you how much more fun winter can be when you can still feel your fingers and toes. So invest in a good pair of winter boots, put a toque on (even if it gives you hat-head) and ditch the pretty gloves for a cozy pair of mitts.
3. Get Active
When you feel the urge to hibernate, force yourself outside. I grew up skiing as a kid and loved it. Four years ago, after a 20 year or so hiatus, I got back on skis this time with four kids in tow. We joined a ski club and made the commitment as a family, that every weekend in January and February at the very least, we will all ski. Not only is our whole family of six outside all day Saturday and Sunday, we are all active too. We love it and we've made some great friends as well! Not a skier? Try snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, take your kids ice skating and sledding. When you make it fun it is fun!
I cannot tell you what an incredible difference making these changes have made to my life in the winter. I still shiver at the sight of the first few snowflakes but once I break out my HappyLight, my warm boots and coat and start tuning up our skis I am actually excited for winter! I don't even know myself anymore!
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Verilux Happy Light, however as always all thoughts and opinions are my own.