Top 10 ways to survive & thrive this winter!

I absolutely love living here in the Ottawa Area but I must admit, there are times during winter that I question why I choose to live in this big, beautiful country.  So here is my top 10 list on things I do to not only survive but thrive during winter.

10. Get outside and play!  Maybe not on those -30 days, but with the right gear making time to enjoy the season is a great way to connect to nature.  (there are many used sports equipment stores that you can rent ski/snow shoe/skating equipment)

9.  Drink tea!  Not just in the morning but sipping it all day long.  I usually have sliced fresh ginger and turmeric, honey & nettles in my thermos.  Keeps me healthy and warm.  What's in your mug?!

8.  Turn the heat up!  Try practicing hot/warm yoga or find which studios or wellness centres have infrared saunas so you can get a good sweat on.

7.  Learn something new!  I love taking on line classes and workshops, so starting the year off to reflect on how I am going to evolve and be inspired to weave new insights into my offerings.

6.  Eat Warm food!  Ayurvedically speaking, this is the season to stock up on warm soups and steamed veggies-minimizing raw fruits or veggies.

5.  Make time to retreat inward!  Obviously checking into le Nordik monthly might be good for the body and mind but a little tricky for the budget.  Sooooooo why not make space daily to focus your attention inward…meditation, journaling, reading, long walks in nature.

4. Vitamin D!  I tend to feel a little low by the lack of light during later fall and winter.  I find it makes a HUGE difference for me when I up my dosage of vitamin D.  Talk to your friendly neighbourhood naturopath to find out what is right for you.

3. Get crafty!  Tis the season to naturally retreat inward, so maybe find some kind of soothing craft project to dive into.  Last year, I learned to knit and needle felt-crafting is also an amazing way of practicing mindfulness.

2. Give your presence! It can feel too easy in our culture to get distracted by what we have or what we want, in terms of stuff.  And I find some of my most meaningful experiences come from connecting with others through volunteering.    

1.  Be kind to yourself!  Try this: for one day observe your thoughts.  You'll probably be surprised at how many negative, self deprecating judgments about yourself  (and others!) pass through your mind daily.  Thoughts are powerful and have a way of igniting action; so try noticing how things begin to shift around you once your perspective changes.