Could it simply be a coincidence that Say Hi Vancouver, Family Day, and Valentines Day all fall within a week in February? Not for Vancouverites. By the time February has arrived, we have endured month after month of cold, darkness, and rain. Many of us tend to hibernate during these months and wonder if Mr. Sun will ever show his face again.
However, when we look at those around us who are thriving (not just surviving) during the cold winter months, they are taking advantage of this down time to rejuvenate themselves. They may not be as energetic or active as they were during the summer months, but they certainly do not freeze and wait for the sun to thaw them to life. People who beat the blues of the rainy season embrace the following C’s to take advantage of this down time:
We are often in the habit of caring for and meeting the needs of others. How about modifying that habit to include yourself? Think about healthy activities that meet your needs. Making this time a priority does not mean that it needs to take a lot of time. When it comes to self-care, quality over quantity is what’s best. Just try to carve out some time in your schedule and give yourself the permission to enjoy a healthy activity without guilt!
As mentioned earlier, we tend to isolate ourselves and hibernate during the cold, winter months. Although some alone time can be quite rejuvenating and comforting, there is a fine line between meaningful solitude and meaningless isolation. Meaningful solitude provides freedom from distractions and allows time for contemplation. By doing so, we can become better connected to ourselves and others. However, meaningless isolation does not provide the same freedom. Instead, we feel alone and we lose sight of the meaningful connections in our lives. So try to stay connected with your social support AND with yourself. We are all social beings who need to belong somewhere or with someone. Just one meaningful connection to someone is all that it takes for some people. If you are feeling disconnected, there’s someone else in your life who may be feeling the same way so trying reaching out!
As much as we are all social beings, we are also creative beings. We all enjoy creating something new and different. Whether it is trying out a new dinner recipe, starting a new art project, or developing a new business idea, aim to create new experiences for yourself. Rather than focusing on the end result, enjoy the act of trying something new and different. These fresh experiences may provide opportunities for you to challenge yourself, think outside the box, learn something new, and (most importantly) have fun!
And so it is no surprise that Vancouverites are enjoying three events this month that encourage us to use our CREATIVITY to CARE and CONNECT. I hope you not only get a chance to apply the 3 C’s to these events but to apply them in your daily life. Rather than waiting for the sun to come out to play, appreciate the opportunity to challenge yourself to (dare I say?) enjoy and thrive during these cold, dark, and rainy months!