with a few momentary exceptions, the weather has been pretty rainy and dreary in chicagoland for the past couple of weeks. grey, drab, cloudy and generally not too warm. while this is par for the course in april (april showers and all), it can be a bit of a motivation suck, both for fitness and professionally. i decided to post a few ways to keep the motivation up, even when the weather is not cooperating.
1. pinterest. whether you’re peeping images of sunshine and beachiness or indulging the weather by finding cozy, rainy scenes, pinterest has everything to fit the bill. here’s an example from one of my boards “for a rainy day” that celebrates stormy skies instead of lamenting them.
you can, of course, ALSO find fitness-focused pins that are inspiring (not thinspiration) and make you want to go work out, run, dance around, etc. here’s one that does it for me.
2. music. most everyone has that album, that song, etc, that is guaranteed to pump them up. if you don’t have one of these, you should find one immediately. dan’s is “lunatic fringe” by red rider. mine is “summer of ’69” by bryan adams. don’t judge. other acceptable uses of music for inspiration and motivation include: blasting 80’s music and dancing around the room, listening to a playlist you made about rain, listening to a playlist you made about sunshine or putting on a classical pandora station (i did nathan milstein today and it was top notch) because there’s something classy about rain and violins.
3. smell. i recently read a huffington post article about how you can use smell to de-stress you, but it can rev you up also. possible scents to give you a little get up and go include oranges, peppermint, lemon, eucalyptus and grapefruit. i like to make some tea with fresh citrus to extract both the smell and the taste, but you can also purchase oils for singling out the scent.
4. drink. espresso of course! i always have a fabulous workout if i’m able to down a shot of espresso before heading to the gym, and the same holds true for work projects and long, rainy afternoons. it gives everything in your life an extra kick in the pants.
5. listen. music is great for motivational purposes. but if you’re not in the mood for tunes, or you want to switch it up, there are a ton of great podcasts available, and depending on what topic you select, they can be extremely stimulating. my new favorite is the accidental creative. he has great ideas for all sorts of creative productivity. i also listen to jillian michaels for fitness/nutrition/health information and inspiration. she’s always got something surprising to say.
6. color. write with bright pens, wear a fluorescent-colored rain jacket. break out the bright pink sweatpants to head to the gym. swipe on bright red lipstick. buy a bunch of flowers. it might all be in your mind, but splashes of color when it’s dark out can make a huge difference in your outlook.
7. clean. if your workspace is cluttered and foggy, your brain will be too. bonus, if you use lemon scented cleaning products, you will get the boost of smell at the same time!
8. make a list. i know, it’s probably just me, but nothing makes me happier than a good list. when i am feeling unmotivated, i write down my short-term goals for the week. that puts me back on track and keeps me focused on things that matter.
9. arts & crafts. if all else fails, give yourself something to look forward to. you may have to suffer through a drab work day or a workout (to which i say, you must be insane! working out is fun!), but if you have a light at the end of the tunnel, it will seem a lot more bearable. one of my personal favorite rainy day activities is arts & crafts. drawing, making jewelry, playing with play-doh, bedazzling things. the sky’s the limit! or you could fantasize about a nice cozy cup of tea in front of a black and white movie while it pours outside (my favorite rainy day movie is breakfast at tiffany’s).
only hit number 9 as a last resort. there must be SOME kind of opportunity in even the most mundane of rainy days that you can capitalize on. find it!
what are your defenses against the negative effects of a rainy day?