March 2, 2011

farewell, february (finally.)

Some people may feel differently, but I've always been in the "Happiness Is A Choice" camp. Sure, there are plenty of outside factors that play into your mood. And of course there are some days that are just not going to be good ones. But on any old day, when you're just feeling a bit "off," I believe in turning it around. I believe that you can--and should--make that choice for yourself.

February can be rough around Chicago. For those fairly brutal twenty-eight days, the trees are bare, the skies are (usually) grey, and the bitter cold persists--having overstayed its welcome by oh, about two months. And this year, it weighed on me. I felt a bit flat, a bit uninspired, and more often than not, happiness was a choice I had to make.

It worked, too, because I've come to realize that there are some go-to cures for those February blues. To start, I amped up the workouts (thank you, endorphins!), kept focused on my writing, and did my best to take walks whenever I could--whenever the temperature was above, say, twenty degrees. And then, of course, there was the clean sweep of our apartment, which confirmed for me yet again that your space shapes your spirit like nothing else can.

I ran and I wrote and I walked and I cleaned and in the end, I survived.

And now I'm more or less floating because March--the month that promises warmth and flowers and soon-to-be sandal weather--has arrived. So happiness will still be a choice for me... it'll just be a much, much easier one.

I'm curious: Have you had the winter blues?
How did you keep up your energy?

(Photos: My Flickr)


jackiek said... [Reply to comment]

Ah yes I agree with you in choosing our happiness. I am a summer girl all the way, so I am happiest when it's nice and warm. In the winter I give myself little treats to help ensure my happiness! Just little things like tea before bed or a new scarf in a bright color to make my days more exciting. It helps make February seem a bit shorter! But still I'm glad it's march and warming up :)

Hannah Elizabeth said... [Reply to comment]

haha. oh Laura. I wrote about Missouri weather blues today. how silly.

I totally know what you are saying though. I believe happiness is a choice too, but sometimes I'm not very good at makin it.

But family time helped me survive this month. and my birthday. that always pushes through :-) although I'm glad it's all over and I get St. Patty's Day and Spring Break in the same month! Yes!

Rachael said... [Reply to comment]

I experienced winter blues at times. Especially since where I am, it snowed once, then cleared up, then snowed again. That got annoying after awhile!
And the gray days. There was a lot of them.
But today the sun is shining, when-they're-not-covered-by clouds, and it's a better day.
My mood definitely suits the weather sometimes!

Caroline said... [Reply to comment]

Yay for getting through February!!!! XO!

CassieLynn said... [Reply to comment]

Yes, I think I have had the winter blues. I joined a gym to keep my spirits up, and I honestly think it is working. Also, MS weather is ridiculous. I'll explain...

MS will be 27 degrees one day and then the next day it will be 72, not kidding. So I always know that even though one day looks like crap outside, the next day might be beautiful tanning weather.

You never know what you'll get down here, and that gives me some hope. :)

Kelly's Adventures said... [Reply to comment]

Yes I agree with the entire first Paragraph. you should choose to be happy when you feel you can but some days are just going to be off

vintch said... [Reply to comment]

march has to hold many happy promises:) with february behind us, and spring on our fingertips, i can't help but welcome march with open arms! happy wednesday:)

Melisande said... [Reply to comment]

those photos are so beautiful- love the blue sky!
i like to go for a walk or ride my bike, clean out my apartment (getting rid of clutter makes EVERYTHING seem so much cleaner and simpler!)and take a hot shower. feeling productive makes me feel better.

Lauren @The Little Things We Do.... said... [Reply to comment]

you know what's weird?

....i've totally had the winter blues this year and i usually don't get them. i fully believe in choosing to be happy, but for some reason, this year had me in a real funk. hoping for the spring to get here soon!

~Abby~ said... [Reply to comment]

I agree with you completely! I need to make the choice to be more happy on "sort of off" days.
The best way is to get out, and have some fun! Doesn't mean you have to go on an extravagant vacation. Just go do something with your friends/family. :)