Five Ways to Stay Connected This Winter

Each year with winter’s arrival, the desire to hibernate settles upon me like a weighted blanket. As the December dusk falls around 4 PM, I often feel muffled, which leads me to retreat from the world. But, burrowing in has a downside. By winter’s end, I’m stir-crazy from staying indoors and to myself. There are only so many days of solitude—even spent reading or watching movies with bottomless cups of tea—that one can have before lethargy and dullness take hold. This winter I will do something different. I will connect with those I love in new and energizing ways to emerge sharp and re-charged in the spring. Here’s how.

– I want to start a monthly cribbage club. The art of the old-time card club is lost and now is the time to revive it. I’ll set up card tables with hopes that friendly competition, backlit by a roaring fire, will perk us up and lead to years-long rivalries. I won’t forget the pastel butter mints or mixed nuts.

– I plan to take more winter walks outdoors. I’ll explore the landscape that I so treasure walking through in the spring, summer and fall months. Just as a neighborhood looks different on foot versus driving, I imagine my neighborhood’s barren winter landscape will be just as enlightening. I look forward to turning the putting on, then taking off of layer after layer of clothing into a peaceful ritual.

– I will throw album listening parties. My first pick will be something classic and yet still relevant, like Patti Smith’s Horses or Kate Bush’s The Kick Inside. I rarely sit and just listen anymore. I’m so busy that music has faded into the background. I’ll invite a group of music lovers who are game to just sit and listen. While the wine and appetizers will flow, I most look forward to the discussion that will follow. Someone else can pick the next party’s album.

– I intend to host a craft night out at a local coffee shop or cafe. I’ve never gathered friends to do art, but I’ll invite those who knit, paint, junk journal, make jewelry, etc. We’ll gather with our projects to work side-by-side with large mugs of coffee and pastries. And for my friends who aren’t crafty, but are interested? I’ll bring extra needles, yarn and other supplies. How satisfying to teach a friend a new craft. And if other cafe-goers are curious, they can join in!

– I’ll throw a classic sleepover. Friends will bring sleeping bags and pillows—okay, maybe air mattresses too—and we’ll order pizza, gossip and play truth-or-dare. Maybe we’ll sneak out after midnight and chalk designs on our absent friends’ front sidewalks. Of course, we’ll make pancakes in the morning.

Categories: Dealing with Anxiety, Life Lesson, Whatever Works

2 replies

  1. This makes me feel less gloomy about the upcoming gloom. Great ideas!

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