opinion   |   column

COLUMN: Push through and be happy this winter



I have noticed that with the onset of Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer cosplayers and fabulous scarves there has been a distinct lack of joviality in the season of jolly. 

People seem to be miserable with their smiles upside down and their bodies hunched against the cold. This simply will not do. It is the most wonderful time of the year, and you should act like it.

There is nothing worse than a Debbie Downer, and the weather is no excuse. If you're freezing, put on extra layers till you're snug as a bug. Unlike the heat, you can always escape the cold by piling on more clothes until you look like a real-life Violet Beauregarde, pre-juicing. If that doesn’t keep you content, then you're just being stubborn.

Regardless of which December tradition you follow, it's important to recognize that the best way to spread good vibes is to have good vibes. You have got to loosen up and have a bit of fun. None of this hunched-shoulders, faces-down drudgery is going to improve your mood. You have got to be happy to have fun and the first step to that is smiling.

Smiling regardless of whether you mean it or not has the effect of making you happier, as the act itself releases the chemicals dopamine and serotonin. It also makes other people more likely to smile, which makes you want to keep smiling. It's a feedback loop of good vibes. However, this only works if you turn that frown upside down first. You have to be the spark that will light the fire that will start the good vibes.

We are all in this cold weather together. We shall all eventually trudge through the snow together. Thus we need to encourage each other until it doesn’t feel like we're trudging through sludge anymore. Go out there and say hi to a stranger. You already have something in common, and people love to be noticed. 

This is the season for camaraderie and new frozen friends. We could all use a few more friends to spread the good vibes with.

Good vibes make the world go round, and right now the world is still. You need to go out there and get the world turning again. You have got to smile more, laugh a little and try your best to be happy. If you try hard enough, eventually you will be happy. You won’t notice the harsh winds or fierce cold. You’ll just notice all the good vibes and good times you're having. 

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