COVID-19 has resulted in some stressful and isolating times. And soon, the weather will get colder and we'll be facing our first full winter season during the pandemic. Honestly, the thought of that has me a little freaked out, which is why I've already started planning for ways to make it as enjoyable as possible.
Read on for some of my ideas to get you started!
Photo courtesy of Jill Carroll.
Embrace the Outdoors.
Funny that I wrote about this last December, before COVID-19 invaded life as we knew it. In this article, I admitted I don't really like winter, even though people think I do because I ski. A distaste for "bad" weather doesn't make it go away. When you choose to embrace time outdoors with a more positive attitude, invest in some quality gear and seek out like-minded friends who also like adventure, you'll be smiling a lot more.
Photo courtesy of Missy Black.
Join or Start a Club
Photography, knitting, painting, jewelry making—the options are endless! This year, a group of my closest friends decided to start a book club. We were inspired by our friend Missy Black, who has read more than 100 books with her group!
"Not only do we read great books," said Missy, "we enjoy good food, conversation, fellowship and inspiration!"
Meet "That" Goal
Winter would be a great time to learn a new language, master a certain type of cooking or get a plan together for that business you've always dreamed of. When we pick something hard and accomplish our goal, it mitigates boredom and gives us a sense of accomplishment. For years, I've wanted to enter a cross-country ski race—and this year, I'm going to do it!
Photo courtesy of Kelsea Rounds.
Warm Up Your Space with Lush Plants and Cozy Lighting
This summer, since we were home so much, I added a lot more tropical plants and lights to our outdoor spaces. It got me thinking: How could I do this INSIDE, this winter?
I did a little research and found some great ideas. And I already love plants, so I will add more. I also learned how much difference lighting can make. Candles, salt lamps, string lights, light-diffusing lamp shades and even portable fireplaces can instantly make your surroundings cozier.
Photo courtesy of Lisa Young.
Have you ever heard a volunteer say they get more out of volunteering themselves than what they think they're giving others? That's because when we take the time to help others, it feels like we're making a positive impact on this crazy world. If you're looking to volunteer and don't know how to get started, take Heart of West Michigan United Way's "What's Your Hidden Volunteering Superpower?" quiz. There are even plenty of virtual and remote projects available!
With a little imagination, planning and risk-taking, this coming winter season can be one with happy memories! What ideas do you have to help get you through?
Written by Jill Carroll, Marketing Manager for West Michigan Woman.