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November 26, 2023 4 mins

Stop complaining about the weather and embrace this time of year

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Speaker 1 (00:03):
Welcome to Before Breakfast, a production of iHeartRadio. Good Morning.
This is Laura. Welcome to the Before Breakfast podcast. Today's
tip is to stop complaining about winter weather and to
boost your happiness by learning to enjoy this season. We're
coming into winter, at least for those of you listening

(00:25):
in the northern Hemisphere, and as the leaves fall off
the trees and the days get darker and colder, it's
easy to give in too gloom. Complaining about freezing temperatures
and sleet and snow could basically be its own winter
Olympic sport. Of course, people in my part of North
America don't have nearly as intense winters as people far
to the north, in northern Alaska, for instance. In Scandinavia,

(00:49):
the sun sets in November and does not rise until January.
It sounds impossibly bleak to me, but a few years
ago I wrote about some research on people who lived
in these far northern places. They did not suffer from
outsized rates of the winter blues. Instead, people who chose
to live in these places also chose to have a

(01:11):
different mindset about winter. They celebrated coziness with candles and fires,
warm blankets, thick sweaters and festive beverages. They embraced activities
such as skiing or snowshoeing that can only be done
in winter. They held festivals to experience winter as a
social occasion. If you think about it, whoever decided to

(01:34):
place Christmas around the winter solstice was onto something smart
rather than more in the dark. People have fun with
their families. People in northern climates made sure to get
outside during the middle of the day, when even polar
night features a little of what looks like dawn and
dusk on the horizon. As the saying goes, there's no

(01:55):
bad weather, only bad clothing. Now, I'll admit that I
find this idea challenging, but since writing that article, which
was called the Norwegian Secret to Enjoying a Long Winter,
I've tried to take some of my discoveries to heart.
I'm naturally cheap, but I decided to buy really good
winter running gear. In my polartech pants, windproof and water

(02:18):
resistant jacket, mittens and such, I can run outside on
a few more days than I would and I almost
always feel better running outside than I do on the treadmill.
I bought a long coat and high waterproof insulated boots,
which means I barely notice chomping through slush and snow
with this equipment to protect me. I set a goal

(02:40):
last year to get outside for at least twenty minutes
a day. Some days that happened in zero degree temperatures,
but I can count the days I missed on one hand.
I also made a winter fund list to give myself
things to look forward to. Now, I will admit that
some of this winter fun involved a skin winter. I

(03:01):
went to California and I went to Florida, and I
enjoyed both trips a lot. There's nothing quite like running
on the beach when you know the folks back home
are dealing with a polar vortex. But in general, I
do think it's possible to love winter, and part of
that is just telling yourself that you will love winter.
When someone complains about the snow, say something positive. Take

(03:25):
a look at the intricate icicles, or the fragile glow
of the sunset colors against bare trees. Beauty is all
around if we care to see it. It might be
a more demanding beauty than that of a June rose garden,
but it is beauty all the same. Do you love winter.

(03:46):
You can let me know at Before Breakfast podcast at
iHeartMedia dot com. In the meantime, this is Laura. Thanks
for listening and here's to making the most of our time. Hey, everybody,
I'd love to hear from you. You can send me

(04:08):
your tips, your questions, or anything else. Just connect with
me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram at Before Breakfast pod.
That's b E the number four then Breakfast pod. You
can also shoot me an email at Before Breakfast podcast
at iHeartMedia dot com. That Before Breakfast is spelled out

(04:29):
with all the letters. Thanks so much. Should I look
forward to staying in touch. Before Breakfast is a production
of iHeartRadio. For more podcasts from iHeartRadio, visit the iHeartRadio app,
Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to your favorite shows.

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Laura Vanderkam

Laura Vanderkam

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