This morning we woke to the news that the Farmers’ Almanac 2019-20 Winter Outlook predicts a “Polar Coaster” winter. The ominous map of the U.S. that accompanied the article begs the question of whether the “Frozen, Snowy” label hovering over Wisconsin was better, or worse, than the “Frigid & Snowy” label atop the Great Plains.
Seems like a toss-up, really. Either way, winter is coming. But first, there’s Fall.
Believe it or not, there are steps you can take now that will improve how prepared you feel for colder weather. And, the more positive your feelings about the seasons to come, the more likely you will be to enjoy rather than suffer through the months to come.
- Start thinking now about how your fitness program will need to adjust for the colder months. There are a lot of low-cost options for indoor exercise - from jumping rope to online yoga videos. Try a few out now so you have a go-to in inclement weather.
- Make a few soups and casseroles and freeze them NOW. Many families struggle to sit down for dinner amidst the sports, academic and social demands of school. Having a few healthy, hearty meals “on ice” takes the stress out of dinner.
- Start going to bed a little earlier. Getting into bed a bit earlier in the days before Daylight Savings Time (Fall back - ugh!) knocks clocks back an hour will help with the transition.
- If you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), or just get a little blue when seasons change, put a plan in place now. Begin a habit of spending 15 minutes outside in daylight and maintain it throughout the fall and winter. This mini-sunbath will also help you maintain levels of Vitamin D.
- Take time each day to “mental floss.” Whether it’s closing your eyes to breathe, taking a moment to journal or spending a few minutes in contemplation - you will benefit from the mental clarity these practices bring.
- Get outside! Spending time in nature (those lovely fall colors) improve mental health and decrease depression symptoms.
- Make plans to see friends! A growing body of research suggests there are health and longevity benefits to connecting with friends.
- Fall is a great time to harness the back-to-school spirit and enroll in a class, join a club or get together with a group of friends for card club, watching the big game, or weekly coffee.
- There’s a special kind of well-being that comes from connecting, supporting and positively impacting the environment in which we live. As fall comes, set a sustainability goal for your household - it can be as simple as making sure your home is as cold-proof as possible and lowering your thermostat to save energy.
- Start budgeting for the holidays now. Setting aside a little money each week helps to increase feelings of financial security and take some of the stress out of the holiday season. If you’re struggling with financial insecurity, explore a free program like St.Vincent De Paul’s Getting Ahead or make a visit to the YWCA’s Women’s Empowerment Center for coaching and support.
- Or, you can join the well-being movement in Greater Green Bay by becoming part of Wello’s Well-Being Influencer Network and playing an active role in shaping the future of our community. Click here for info!