Cold weather? ‘Snow’ Problem

By February 12, 2018AmeriCorps*VISTA

By Madison McConnell


Keeping motivated and energized through long winter months!

Staying motivated through the cold, often dreary winter months in Minnesota can be a real challenge. It’s much easier and more comfortable to stay in a warm house or apartment watching TV or browsing for hours on the web. Here are a few tips to stay motivated and energized during the long winter months:

  1. Wake up early

I know, this seems especially hard on cold, snowy days, but setting a routine and sticking to it is a great booster for productivity. Plus, since winter days are shorter getting up earlier can give you more daylight hours to enjoy!

  1. Get some exercise

You don’t have to go to the gym to get those endorphins, boost your energy and mood! If you’re able, take the stairs or find a few moments throughout the day to stretch – even from your desk. Since a lot of people are coming to and leaving work in the dark during winter months putting in a few moments to boost your endorphins throughout the day can be a huge help in lifting your spirits.

  1. Craft a to-do list (and include a few ‘done’s’)

Creating a to-do list at the beginning of the day, week or month can help you to feel more focused during the winter season. If you have lots of important tasks to accomplish at work but you feel lack of energy or motivation, you can also try making to-do lists each day. A great tip making to-do lists is to add a couple things to the top of the list that you’ve finished the day or week before so you can cross something off right away!

  1. Enjoy what Winter has to offer

In Minnesota especially there are never-ending opportunities for winter season fun. From ice skating to skiing; from snow fort building to hot chocolate drinking, the winter months are full of unique activities your simply can’t enjoy any other time of the year. Living up North the possibilities are even broader (and available even longer) than elsewhere in the US! Take advantage of it and you will stay motivated and productive each day. When a person is in a good mood, they tend to accomplish more during the day. Some fun things to do in the Twin Cities this winter:

  • Go ice skating at one of the free ice rinks downtown. Especially nice in the evenings, surrounded by twinkly city lights!
  • If you can manage to save up a little money and splurge on a skiing outing then check out cross-country skiing! Some of the best trails in the country are right in the metro area. Or try downhill skiing and snowboarding at one of several hills within an hour of the metro area, or at a proper ski resort, Spirit Mountain, three hours north.
  • Snowshoeing is a fun and affordable winter activity. Minneapolis Parks’ have snow shoe rentals for $12 and under.  
  • Children love to play in the snow. Take kids (or yourself) sledding, or out to build snowmen, followed by hot chocolate.
  • We have many days when it’s a joy to be outside. The day after a blizzard for instance, is usually calm and clear – bundle up and crunch through the fresh snow.
  • Here’s a list of even more fun things to do in the winter.
  1. Treat yourself

Self-care is important year-round but in the winter you can kick it up a notch! Make your favorite warm dessert, find a fireplace and a good book, make and gift a cozy blanket, go thrift shopping or to a coffee shop for a nice hot chocolate with friends, the days may be shorter but you can pack them full with quality time!

Winter is a great time to set goals and intentions for the year to come. Hopefully, these tips help you make the most of our winter months, especially since around here that could be through April!