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10 practical tips on how to survive the Danish winters

So, picture this: I'm originally Italian, raised in the land of pasta, sunshine, and gelato. But for almost a decade now, I've been soaking up the Danish vibes in Copenhagen. But truth be told, here in Denmark, I've upgraded my weather conditions.

Coming from a place near Milan where winters are like something out of a Dickens novel—freezing, foggy, but lacking that picturesque snow globe charm—I gotta say, Denmark ain't half bad.

Sure, you might think Copenhagen is a perpetual rain zone, but I've never once purchased an umbrella or rain trousers. And I've been biking my way to work for 20 minutes a day. Surprisingly, it's not half bad!

For me, the harshest winter blues hit in late January. Especially February. It's like the month is playing mind games with me. In my head, February is all about spring vibes, flowers blooming, birds chirping. But in reality? It's the coldest slap in the face all year, with zero festivities to distract me from the soul-sucking monotony of adulting, cold, and damp weather.

Now, let's survive this Danish winter with some mind games we can play to our advantage:

  1. Exercise: A good sweat sesh at the gym, or at the sauna, or a brisk run outdoors can flip your mood like a pancake. Seriously, from the first session, it can flip your mood faster than you can say "ciao bella!"

  2. Light therapy: Ever heard of faking it till you make it? Invest in a sunlight lamp to trick your brain into thinking it's summer all year round. Matas has got your back with their light therapy gear.

  3. Vitamin D supplementation: When the sun decides to take a vacation, which is pretty much all winter here, grab yourself some Vitamin D supplements. Swing by any store, from Netto to Meny, you'll find them everywhere. Your mood will thank you later.

  4. Indoor hobbies: Get cozy with indoor activities that make time fly by. Find yourself a hobby that's like a black hole for time—a few hours feel like an eternity in the best way possible. Lots of people I know enjoy playing board games at Bastard Cafe, personally, I hate it, and I'd rather hop on this website finding communities I could volunteer for.

  5. Use the Wide time calendar: I've got this genius calendar hack that'll help you conquer the Danish weather. It's like a cheat code for navigating the seasons in Denmark. Celebrate the New Year on September 1st, switch up your routines between October and November, try something new every single day in March, and strive to celebrate your goals by May 31st. Then just enjoy the summer. Check the TED talk and get your hands on the calendar here.

  6. Try winter bathing: Picture this: You, your friends, and a refreshing dip in icy waters followed by a cozy breakfast. It's a great excuse to bond with friends over breakfast afterward. It feels like something out of an Einstein and Grossman meeting at the Cafe Metropol minus the math talks.

  7. Embrace hygge and new light bulbs: Remember those harsh white LED lightbulbs from back home? Yeah, ditch 'em. It's all about warm, cozy vibes here in Copenhagen. Switch up your light bulbs and make yourself feel like you're living in a fairy tale with those warm lights. Wiz is a cheap alternative to the expensive Philipps bulbs.

  8. Socialize: Force yourself to put on pants and go hang out with friends. Sure, not everyone here is as spontaneous as they might be back home, but instead of fighting it, embrace it. Schedule to go out and just do it. I like to socialize while exploring Copenhagen by different cuisines. A while ago I had even made this website Micro-travel | Travel by Cuisines.

  9. Stay active outdoors: Bundle up and get some fresh air. I have started to believe that cycling is not only a means of transport for the Danes but also an undercover coping mechanism.

  10. Maintain a healthy sleep schedule: Don't underestimate the power of a good night's sleep. It's like hitting the reset button on your soul.

bikes in copenahgen
Danish lifecycle and coping mechanism

Embrace the Danish winter like a boss and watch as those winter blues fade into oblivion. It's all about attitude, cozy vibes, and maybe a little bit of schnapps to warm the soul!

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