With the onslaught of cold weather, frost and snow across most of the country, winter is notorious for causing many to go into somewhat of a “hibernation”. By hibernation, we mean staying indoors, slipping into inactivity in both your mind and body, as well as taking on bad habits with food and drink. Discovering the beauty of winter can help you re-engage your mind body spirit and grow your appreciation for the coldest months of the year.

Your mindset going to the colder months can greatly impact your appreciation for all of nature’s wonders. When you hear about freezing rain, whipping winds, sleet or snow, bundle up and take on the day with a new found attitude on winter – changing your mindset and outlook on winter can help you live in the present, appreciate the beauty of winter and marvel at the power of Mother Nature.

Create a winter journal or as some Native American tribes did, a winter count. Mark the first snow, the last snow and everything in between. Record whatever strikes you as important, valuable, memorable or fun! Include photos, drawings or doodles to add visual elements to your journal or count. Use this tool for growth and reflection.

Have fun! Try something new – go ice skating, rent some snow shoes or take your dog out for a winter hike! The beauty of winter is often lost in the city so take time out to explore nature and take in the quiet serenity that winter offers. Other fun and silly winter activities: make a snow angel, catch snowflakes on your tongue, take winter photos of trees, sit with the sun on your face, or build a snowman. Taking time to have fun, live in the present and enjoy God’s gifts in winter will help you develop an appreciation for the long winter months.

Learn patience. Winter can often bring isolation, depression and feel absent of warmth. Learning to test and grow your patience can lead to further self-transportation and spiritual growth.

Be mindful of the obstacles winter brings and seek out ways of curbing the cold with warm fires, meditation, winter activities and a positive outlook on the season.