Helping News                                                   January, 2009   Issue 6

De-Stress and Energize during the Cold Months 
Dark, cold and bitter months of Winter can be a challenge to manage. Many of us in the colder climates find ourselves fatigued, stressed and unenthusiastic.  The season often sets up many of us for a sense of gloom, exhaustion and even depression. If not                       
deliberately working 
at it, we can find 
ourselves just wishing
time away until the 
sun returns. Looking 
forward to Spring is 
widespread, but can  
result in a shortening 
of experiences and 
awareness, thus 
shortening our
lives. Rather than 
enhancing this
emptiness, we can 
de-stress, and seize
opportunities to energize 
and enjoy!

Try these suggestions for De-stressing and Energizing:
* Wherever you are, occasionally stop what you're doing, focus on your
surroundings, breathe slowly and deeply and simply watch.

* Practice progressive relaxation: Beginning with the top of your head, your face, neck tense all the muscles for a few seconds, then release and relax. Then move down through chest, back, stomach, hips, into your thighs, calves... all the way to your feet, to the tips of your toes... tense for a few seconds then relax.

* Brief exercise: For de-stressing, increasing your heart rate for only 1-2 minutes is all you need to experience release and counteract temporary tension.  

* Longer, moderate outdoor exercise: A 30minute walk, a stroll in the park, sled riding with the kids, and walking the dog allow you to produce anti-stress agents in your body, energize and expand your awareness.

* Plan and select activities special to Winter: 
Going to an indoor sporting event, planning a 
special dinner, planning a special Winter trip
 can spice up the cold months.

* Do something out of the ordinary, and commit 
it to memory for future Winters: Taking a midnight 
walk in the snow or having a Winter picnic can 
produce a memorable twist to the season. 

* Eat healthily: Be aware of your diet, don't overload on sweets and carbohydrates, which is a common impulse in the colder months. Tried and true diet of vegetables, fruit, and protein packed snacks is vital this time of year.                                                 

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