For many of us in the US, especially in the Northern part of the US, we’re in what is commonly referred to as the “Winter Doldrums”. If I can speak on behalf of all of us stuck in this winter phase, I’d say we’re basically, sick of winter, really ready for spring and have very little energy to do much of anything! Does that sum it up?

Well, I’d like to propose a different perspective on the dreaded winter doldrums.

What would happen if you decided to celebrate this time of year?

Can’t think of much to celebrate? Well, here are a couple of ideas to get you going…

  • being cozy warm, while it’s cold outside
  • brilliant sunshine against a deep blue winter sky
  • enjoying invigorating winter activities such as skiing, snowboarding or ice skating
  • time to catch up on your sleep
  • the peacefulness after a snowfall
  • hot cocoa and a good book by a fire.

It’s kind of fun to start thinking about all of the nice things this time of year brings. Are there a few things you’d like to add to this celebration list?

Now that you are starting to think about this time of year just a little bit differently, how can you use this time of year to prepare for the rest of the year? My friend who is an avid gardener comes to mind. At this time of year, she is:

  • planning where her garden will be
  • deciding what she will grow in each location
  • putting in her calendar when she needs to plant certain things
  • doing research about various plants, seeds, planting methods, etc.

She doesn’t wait until spring to do this, because it’s too busy then. Besides, it would NOT give her enough time to ENJOY planning her garden.

What aspect in your life would benefit by using the winter doldrums to plan, research and enjoy? Maybe it’s your career, your business or your personal life? Or, perhaps this quote may resonate with you…

“A hobby a day keeps the doldrums away.”
by Phillis McGinley, an author and poet

Is there a hobby you’ve always wanted to take up…maybe knitting, skiing, or yoga? Or, is there something else you’ve been meaning to do, but just haven’t gotten around to it? The winter doldrums can be the perfect time to move forward on any of these!

If you love lists, like I do, then I’d like to suggest you create a list called “Fun Ways to Beat the Winter Doldrums”. Then, begin brainstorming all the things that would be fun to do right now and put them on your new list! It might include:

  • a book you’ve wanted to read
  • a class you want to take
  • a friend you want to get together with
  • a new skill that will catapult you forward in your career
  • a marketing plan for your business
  • a plan to save money in the new year.

How would it feel to use this time to create, explore and prepare? Rejuvenating? Exciting? Perhaps embarking on these things may make this time of year fly by, instead of dragging on.

Perhaps you’ll make this an annual ritual you do in February and you find yourself actually looking forward to the winter doldrums, just like my friend the avid gardener!

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to celebrate the winter doldrums, instead of dreading (and complaining about) them?

Helen Kosinski
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