Each year on Groundhog Day we hear about the infamous Punxsutawney Phil, and whether or not our furry little friend emerged on a sunny day, predicting six more weeks of winter, or a cloudy day, permitting him as the harbinger of an early spring.
Regardless of Phil’s predictions, early February always leaves me in a state of discontent, as I know deep down that winter is far from over. Sure by this point we have already made it through the coldest month of the year and I know that the worst is behind us, yet my mind always longs for warmer weather and sunny skies. It is this mindset that never ceases to bring me into that classic winter hump mindset.
So what is the significance of Groundhog Day? Is it just a cruel annual reminder that spring is still miles away? Or was it created to inspire hope to get us through the last bit of winter? My guess is the latter, however, it is difficult to convince myself into getting on board with the idea.
As part of one of my New Year’s resolutions, I have decided to try my best to frame negative situations in a more positive light. The idea for this resolution came about in late 2016 as I anxiously anticipated my total hip replacement surgery in early 2017. My thought was rather than focus on the negative aspects of the situation, I would focus my efforts on what the future holds and what to look forward to, e.g. the ability to walk without pain, and the mental wellness in knowing that I no longer have to worry about my hip giving out.
By applying this resolution to my typical winter mindset, I can finally appreciate what Groundhog Day is supposed to inspire. I am currently anticipating the blossoming of the outdoors, believing that warm weather might be just around the corner. I am already planning for my emergence into the world from beyond these solidly closed walls that is my apartment. I am dreaming about the wonderful spring flowers and the lazy days of summer coming our way.
So regardless of what Punxsutawney Phil predicts and the possibility of a long winter, remember to think positive in knowing that spring is just around the corner, and that summer is not far behind! Sometimes it is all about which frame we decide to put our situation in.