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Do you struggle with dark winters? 03.11.20

DO you struggle to get through the long, dark winters? Does it affect your mood and mental health? Do you spend most of the season comfort eating and wishing the days away until spring or summertime?
Then a new online programme, available now, may be just the support you need to thrive this winter...
Find out more at www.thrivingwinter.ie .
'Thriving Winter' is the brainchild of local Inishowen fisherman and musician Luke McGuinness. The 14-week structured programme aims to transform winter into a positive and fulfilling experience for everyone taking part.
Luke explains, “It combines physical activity, creativity, mindfulness and gratitude to help you manage winter and boost your mental well-being. This course is delivered through weekly sessions and there’s an online support group to help out in between.”
“Thriving Winter is aimed at others like me who need a helping hand to guide them through this darker season. It’s for anyone who finds the winter long, bleak or painful or who feels overwhelmed, tired or unfocused in winter.”

Luke spent several years abroad, working on boats, and really felt the mental challenge of Irish winters when he came home. So, last year he took action to help himself and others face the season.
“I organised Facebook and WhatsApp groups to get people together for activities to break the monotony of the winter months. We went for hikes, runs and swims. The sense of community that came along with this helped to make the season more enjoyable.”
“Now, the current Covid restrictions mean that meeting up with others from outside of your household is not advised. So, I figured a fun and engaging online course could be a good solution to this problem.”

Over the last few years, Luke has assembled what is basically a mental toolkit. “People could benefit massively from getting access to this toolkit. Taking part in the course also offers structure and accountability to help make sure they meet their own expectations.”
Participants will receive a link to each weekly video every weekend and can also access them through the website. Luke continued, “Each video will have helpful tips for dealing with winter’s challenges. They will also have tasks to ensure that participants can apply these tips and tools right away.”
“The course will start off slow and easy but become slightly more challenging as it progresses. There will indeed be some hard work involved, as there usually is with all the best things in life.”
Luke said there is a Facebook group to accompany the course. “This group will create a very kind and supportive community between sessions. This will help boost your motivation and focus to meet winter’s challenges head on.”
“My hope is that those who take part will feel energised, focused and content throughout the winter months. So, by springtime they’ll feel the course made winter more bearable but also improved the rest of their lives too.
To find out more or to book a place on the course, email luke@thrivingwinter.ie , phone 0867359363 or go to www.thrivingwinter.ie .
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