Make “I am not held back by winter” your mantra for February in Ottawa

On a weekday in mid January, there were fewer people on the bus than usual. It was -23 C with bone chilling winds. One of the people was Radya Djibril, a 19-year-old La Cité College student in the child and youth worker program, on her way to class.

What would compel a student like her to step out of a warm home on a freezing cold day?

“When my alarm rings, I say to myself ‘let’s say, you don’t go to college today. You have to go tomorrow. Then what’s the point of not going today when the weather is going to be usually cold?'” she says. “I remind myself of the OSAP that I am taking. That I have to pay back. So there is no way back, and I have to move forward day by day.”

The winter season is a constant battle between choosing whether you want to get out of bed to achieve your dreams or stay in bed and maybe later regretting not sticking to your routine. During the winter, there are strategies that students use in their everyday lives to make sure to stick to their routines which will lead to improving their grades.

Some people turn to their friends for of encouragement. The thought of a friend can help you keep going through the day. Sirisha Jayampu, a second-year computer programmer student at Algonquin College, has one of those friends.

“My trick for motivation is to have a friend to study with and to be active or to talk to her when I am stressed,” she says. “This makes me follow my routine and to have a plan for the next day.”

Goals can help set your soul on fire and as well can help you overcome the long, dark and cold winter season.

Wiam Lambarki, a 20-year-old Carleton University student, is a first-year in the mechanical engineering program. She aspires to become a mechanical engineer one day and has set goals in her life that makes her want to jump out of bed.

“I can’t miss a class because every day makes me feel closer to success,” Lambarki says. “I just think that my dreams are near to becoming a reality, so no matter how cold it is I have no choice but to realize my dreams and to be strong to face the weather.”

Dreams and goals you set for yourself can help with motivation to stay in the game and not give up. “Being an independent woman is my dream. I am not held back by winter,” Lambarki says. “I go for shopping on my own even if it’s too cold outside.”

Regretting it later is so much worse. A helpful rule to live your life by is, “regret after, or do it now.”

Jayampu wants to keep a consistent work ethic so she has an idea for waking up on time. “I set the thermostat to increase the temperature by the time I wake,” she says. “This makes it easier for me to get ready and go.”

Encouragement must come from the inside: it is not up to other people to keep you encouraged. Your future is totally up to you.





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