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5 Marvelous Ways To Beat The Winter Chill

5 Marvelous Ways To Beat The Winter Chill

Shivering is your body’s signal to you that you need to get somewhere warm. In a heartbeat. Your body shivers because it’s trying to tell you that your muscles aren’t contracting anymore, thereby ensuring your blood flow is decreasing.

This is bad news.

Luckily, there are a few handy and fun ways to maximize the joys of beating the winter chill. Let’s take a look!

1. Throw A Party

No, not that kind of party. Well, you can if you feel like it. But I mean a dinner party that involves a lot of baking. Baking when it’s cold out is a common trick (such as baking bread). But if you’re baking a lot of food for a dinner party (say, a casserole, followed by meat-loaf, etc.) you’re going to get a lot more mileage out of the oven’s heat.

An added bonus to this trick is good-ol’ science: The more people that are around you, the more you get to bask in the joys of their body warmth. This makes your home much cozier and warm.

An even bigger bonus to throwing a party is this: Being able to show off your brand-new curtains! A lot of people swear by hanging up thicker, denser curtains (like wool-cotton) on their windows to block out the cold. Just find some curtains that match your interior décor, hang them up, and presto! Instant serenity that doubles in its value.

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2. Dance

Like the Lady Gaga song says, “Just dance… Gonna be okay…” You’ll warm yourself up (and anybody with you) in no time if you pick a funky groove, and get your shake on. (Am I nerdy or what?)

Picking an up-tempo rock (or pop hit) song that you can move your feet to gets your heart up. Everybody knows that increasing your heart-rate is how you keep your heart healthy and young. It’s a good way to “take your breath away” and start breaking a sweat.

You could just as easily work out, with something as simple as jumping jacks or burpees! But I personally find dancing to be a lot less of a chore than working out. (Which says a lot about me, but hey… Who doesn’t like having fun?)

Now everybody’s personal dance songs differ, but I’d like to share with you some songs that never fail to “help you get up off your feet, and you’ll feel better.” (James Brown ftw!)

You can find all these songs on YouTube:

  • Coldplay – Charlie Brown
  • White Stripes – Hotel Yorba, Black Math, Fell In Love With A Girl, Forever For Her (Is Over For Me), The Air Near My Fingers, Effect And Cause. (There’s a lot more, but we’ll be here all day – I LOVE The White Stripes)
  • The Kinks – People Take Pictures, Johnny Thunder, Big Sky
  • Foster The People – Houdini, Pumped Up Kicks
  • Cheap Trick – Surrender
  • Franz Ferdinand – Take Me Out

Those are just a few musical prompts you can load up on YouTube and help you work the floor to dance Winter’s chill away.

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3. The Wonders Of A Scalding-Hot Bath

After a strenuous workout, a lot of professional athletes soak in a scorching-hot bath for half an hour. This is because hot water “stretches out” muscles and nerves, preventing inflammation and fluid build-up in limbs.

(I do a round of HIIT each week and, trust me, I’ve seriously regretted the sessions I cut out the hot bath recovery in an effort to save time. It is THAT vital towards keeping your limbs as fresh and relaxed as they can be.)

Immersing yourself in a hot bath, even if you hardly work out, can feel like heaven.

Hot water naturally relaxes the body – this much we know already. That’s why so many overworked, grunting people look forward to a hot bath and glass of wine at the end of a hard day. Every one of us needs that type of peace of mind, right?

Plus, studies have shown diabetics who soak in a hot tub or hot bath every day reduce their sugar and glucose levels! This is incredible news that has many advantages for thousands of diabetics everywhere.

If that weren’t awesome enough, hot baths even help you lose weight. People discovered that soaking in hot baths for half an hour each day of the week helped them shed almost 2 ½ lbs. in one month. (So, if you’re already working the circuits, CrossFit, or HIIT rounds – which significantly burn up enough calories – by soaking in a hot bath you’re turning your metabolism into a fat-burning machine!)

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However, because your body temperature raises and your body will dehydrate, it is highly recommended that you take a glass of cold water with you. Staying hydrated during the day is important, and not just because it gets oxygen to your cells, lubricates your joints, and cleanses toxins from your body.

With all the benefits we know about a hot bath, it’s time to tackle something that’s FUN. Something that’s amazing (and relaxing) when it comes to hot water…

4. Hot Hot Tubs

You should know, right off the bat, that two-person hot tubs will usually set you back $1500-3000, for starters. For models that seat 5-7 people, you’re looking at $3000-8000. So, these babies are not for the faint of heart, or weekend hobbyists who are game for a soak every now and then. Even building an extra wooden deck to house the tub can set you back $500+, for starters.

Hot tubs are a lot better than hot baths and even more relaxing. They are for serious people who are serious about treating their many aches, pains, and physical disorders.

If money is no problem for you, then hot tubs are a GREAT investment. Everyone I know wants a hot tub – and we’re all secretly jealous of people who do have one.

5. Make Love (Adults Only)

Sweet, unbridled passion with your loved one. Is there anything better? I can’t think of any, especially during the winter. This isn’t a time to blush or feel embarrassed, as rolling around in the covers and exploring your lover’s body is one of the best ways to warm up. (Obviously!)

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There’s a two-fold light of enjoyment here, too. Once you’ve successfully heated each other up, turning each other into a sweaty mess, sleep is right around the corner. Falling into the arms of another is a serenity few people savor.

Which doesn’t make sense, since falling asleep lowers your body temperature. Scientifically-speaking, your lowered body temperature will combat the cold. (Plus you won’t actually be awake to feel the cold.)

Conclusion

And there we have it! 5 ways to make sure the winter freeze stays out of your home.

These are just a few ways to keep yourself from being beaten by the cold. Do you have any other suggestions?

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via pixabay.com

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Maya Levine

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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