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Weather & Your Attitude

A new perspective on how to avoid letting cold and cloudy weather ruin your healing journey.

As far back as I can remember, every year, like clockwork, just about everywhere I go out in public, and at family gatherings, folks start groaning and complaining about cold, cloudy weather starting in October. It’s time for that to stop. Let’s talk about it.

It’s easy to clam up and want to stay out of the cold now that the season has changed. However it’s essential to stay strong with your exercise routine, regardless of the weather. In other words, don’t let the weather dictate your health habits. Find a way to keep moving. In fact, bundling up and getting outside in the cold is actually GOOD for you! It stimulates healing, plus you need fresh air. Even a quick 10 minute walk does wonders. If it’s inclement weather, be sure you have an indoor exercise plan to default to. The mental aspect of getting well/staying well is about constant problem solving and working through adversity. Plus you are human – you are made to do hard things! Healing is not easy but you can do this!

Yes the days are shorter now and it’s a bit cloudier, but let’s work on avoiding blaming the weather for feeling blue. It’s an easy out. Sure, we all would love more sunshine. I’m with you. But letting the weather dictate your attitude is like allowing someone who cuts you off in traffic to ruin the rest of your day. Don’t give that driver any of your energy (in other words, don’t take it personally) and don’t give your energy away to the weather either. It’s colder, it’s darker, it’s not as pleasant out. Okay, so be it. Find the beauty in the day anyway! Thrive despite the weather. Find a way to have sunshine on the inside. It may sound cheesy but this is where true happiness comes from. If we allow outside forces to dictate our attitude, we will be on an emotional roller coaster which blocks healing and creates illness. Sunny day = happy. Cloudy, cold day = sad. It does not have to be that way, it’s just that we, as a society, have been conditioned to think that way.

Break the cycle!

Instead, observe the winter world around you. What species of animals thrive in this weather? Have you seen how the trees get backlit during a winter sunset, where their silhouette paints a one of a kind picture on the horizon? You can only see that in the winter because the trees are bare. Over the years, I’ve noticed much more colorful and elaborate skies during sunrise and sunset in the winter. How does mother nature make all those colors… clouds! The different densities in the clouds change the light refraction, thus we see really breathtaking colors. Did you know deciduous trees drop their leaves to conserve energy and water to make it through the winter? This is why they explode with growth in the spring. This is a beautiful process. Did you ever notice the deep south and southwest US has scraggly, scrawny looking trees? Sure it’s warmer all year, but they do not have the beautiful foliage that we do here in the north when spring hits. Bare winter trees make you appreciate their spring bloom.

To be clear, I am not dismissing any mental health challenges like depression, nor the fact that we are human and there are times we just don’t feel amazing. It’s healthy to express the full spectrum of emotions. I’m asking you to work on your mindset independent of the basic outside factors such as the weather.

This message is to show you that your reality and your attitude is truly all between your ears. The game of life (and healing) is played on the inside of you, not the outside. There are just as many miserable people living in warm climates as cold. What separates someone with a good attitude from someone with a pessimistic one – it’s not the weather, that’s for sure. It’s their mindset. Regardless of the outside world, winter, summer, drought, or monsoon, to heal and be well it’s your job and your job only to find beauty in all situations and all seasons. The sooner you embrace this, the sooner you put more energy into healing rather than complaining. To help illustrate and prove that it’s about your mindset and that the mind creates your reality, go on YouTube and search for the “rubber arm experiment.” You will see just how amazing the mind can be. Once you learn to create a healthier mindset, you will manifest incredible things.
Embracing the weather no matter the season is not just about the weather. When you change your mindset and decide you are going to make it the best day you can, no matter the weather, you are doing something FAR greater. You are taking responsibility for your attitude. I’m sure you’ve heard a version of, “it’s not as much what happens to you but how you respond.” Or, “life is 10% what happens to you and 90% of your reaction.” How about, “count your blessings, not your problems.” These are just a few ways to say the same thing. When you get thrifty and find ways to stay on your healing journey even if it’s a blizzard, or 33 and raining, or 105 heat index, it means you are not letting outside forces dictate your success. This mindset trickles over into all other aspects of your life. Once you start to see that it’s your response to the situation that dictates your attitude and ultimately if you succeed or not, your world starts to open.

Examples where this concept applies beyond just the weather: The grumpy coworker who glares at you daily, the road rage you experience in rush hour traffic, the Amazon delivery person who routinely ignores your delivery instructions, the in-law who gives you unsolicited advice… enter your personal example here [……]. And the list goes on! If you let these things get under your skin, you miss a lot of the good things also around you. When you start complaining about these annoyances, your brain is being distracted from the beauty and positives. Physiologically in the brain, neurons that fire together get wired together. Thus, if you have a habit of complaining or allowing minor things to push you around mentally, you are more likely to go down that pathway. Once you start becoming self-aware, switching your response and creating a new more productive habit, those neurons re-wire to the new mindset.

Remember, where there is dark, there is always light. We have both forces around us, in balance, all the time. It’s up to you to embrace this balance. Get out there and keep kicking butt and appreciate the beauty all around you. And keep smiling, rain or shine, hot or cold. It’s just the weather.

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