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How To Embrace Winter

How To Embrace Winter


    If you live in Canada, the northern USA or any other region in the world where there are cold winters, I’m sure that you hear it all the time. Many people in these areas will constantly complain about how bitter cold it is outside during the winter months. These folks hate winter, hate the snow and get wait until the spring arrives.

    If financial budgets are there, these people will book the next flights to sunny tropical destinations for a vacation just to get away from the cold. The travel industry of course takes advantage of this as they have their newspaper, radio and TV ads with promotions to the beaches in full force.

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    I hear complaints about winter from those who were born and raised in winter regions as well as immigrants who came here from tropical countries where there was never ever any snow. These people absolutely hate where they live for three to four months each year as they still freeze while bundled up in winter clothing.

    Not An Ideal Way To Live

    In my humble opinion, hating where you live for three to four months every single year is not an ideal way to live. Why would anybody want to do that? If one hates winter, one would be stuck just dreading one-quarter to one-third (depending on where you live) of each year for as long as one lives in a winter region like Canada or the northern USA states.

    Personally, I love winter and this often puts the winter-haters in complete disbelief. What really boggles their minds is that instead of taking off to the Caribbean or to Florida during the winter months, I actually take trips to places where there is more snow!

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    Of course to really understand this is to realize that I’m an avid snow skier, which is the reason why I love winter. I along with many others, found the key to getting through the cold months without complaining. I believe that the secret is to embrace rather than hate winter.

    Find Winter Activities That You Would Enjoy

    I always tell winter-haters, especially immigrants who are still shivering, that the only way to embrace the winter is to find activities that would be enjoyable. One criteria is that these activities should be those that can only be done during the winter rather than some activity that one can done indoors all year round (like playing cards).

    The activities should be specifically winter only as this will make you look forward to the snow rather than to hate it. Here are some examples of winter specific activities that are worth trying out.

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    • Downhill (alpine) snow skiing
    • Cross-country skiing
    • Snowboarding
    • Ice skating
    • Ice hockey
    • Tobogganing
    • Snowshoeing
    • Dog sledding
    • Ice fishing
    • Snowmobiling

    If you are active in such winter activities, you will likely spend the last part of each autumn eagerly preparing for the snow to finally fall! That’s how I feel during my pre-season ski training. It is a very natural way to adapt to the changes of each upcoming season.

    Try A Winter Vacation

    Even if you live in a warm, tropical region where you don’t experience cold winters, you should consider coming to a winter destination like the Rocky Mountains in Canada or the USA and the eastern winter areas like Quebec or Vermont. I have met vacationers from warm places such as Mexico and Israel at ski resorts.

    Experiencing winter in a fun way through some of the activities I mentioned would really broaden your own horizons to what the world really has to offer. And for those who already live in winter regions, embracing these months will give you much more peace of mind throughout your entire year.

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    (Photo credit: Skiers Playing in the Snow via Shutterstock)

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    Last Updated on January 21, 2020

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

    your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

      Why You Need a Vision

      Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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      How to Create Your Life Vision

      Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

      What Do You Want?

      The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

      It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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      Some tips to guide you:

      • Remember to ask why you want certain things
      • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
      • Give yourself permission to dream.
      • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
      • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

      Some questions to start your exploration:

      • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
      • What would you like to have more of in your life?
      • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
      • What are your secret passions and dreams?
      • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
      • What do you want your relationships to be like?
      • What qualities would you like to develop?
      • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
      • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
      • What would you most like to accomplish?
      • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

      It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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      What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

      Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

      A few prompts to get you started:

      • What will you have accomplished already?
      • How will you feel about yourself?
      • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
      • What does your ideal day look like?
      • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
      • What would you be doing?
      • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
      • How are you dressed?
      • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
      • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
      • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

      It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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      Plan Backwards

      It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

      • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
      • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
      • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
      • What important actions would you have had to take?
      • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
      • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
      • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
      • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
      • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

      Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

      It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

      Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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