I have decided that I am no longer complaining about weather. I know I know, you're shocked and appalled and wondering what the heck you're going to talk to me about right?! It is so interesting to me when people say things like “Crazy weather we’re having eh?” or "Ughh it's so cold!" I mean honestly if we all had a dollar for every time someone said this to you or you said this to someone else you would probably be able to retire early or at the very least take a pretty great vacay no?
Here’s the thing, even though we have decided that as Canadians we “bond” over the weather chit chat, it actually reinforces that negative loop in our brains. Humans have on average somewhere between 20K and 60K thoughts in every single day. Even if they are thought fragments or just an image that pops up in your mind, that counts towards that overall number. I don’t know about you but the weather comes up at least once or twice a day in conversation with others and so added up over time we spend a lot of our thoughts and time on the weather.
Dr. Rick Hanson says that we are hardwired for negativity. Our brain did this thousands of years ago for survival. So, okay it might be an ancient response to complain about the winter weather because yes thousands of years ago it really could have been a survival situation if we weren’t properly prepared. But now? Now we have peppermint mocha lattes, ugg slippers and gas fireplaces to get cozy with. It’s really no longer a matter of survival on a daily basis for most of us (I’m willing to assume that if you’re reading this you have adequate shelter in these winter months and of course I’m not talking about freak storms that actually do threaten our well-being in an acute way.)
If we want to work towards a more positive way of life (and I know I do!) then we have to be willing to get off of the “weather complaint” band wagon. It’s such a simple topic of conversation that so many people use as an ice breaker which is why I think that it becomes such a force of habit. But imagine if we could use other topics of conversation instead? Imagine if we asked someone instead “what do you like to DO in this weather?”, you might just be surprised by the answers that you receive.
In fact, even those of us who are guilty of weather “group think” complaining may own a pari of skis or snowshoes which indicates to me that at some point you decided that you weren’t just going to make the most of the season but that you were actually going to give an honest effort towards enjoying it. Imagine…enjoying winter weather!
Danish people have a saying that “there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.” If we could embrace this principal then we could probably be better able to enjoy the cold or damp weather that comes our way. In fact if we could get outside more often and move our bodies and feel comfortable while doing so then we can also increase our immune system’s ability to fight off winter viruses. Yes it seems like a real investment when purchasing high quality outer wear but I have personally been blown away by the difference and have been able to more comfortably enjoy outdoor time in colder temperatures.
Here are some suggestions to enjoy the winter weather this year: