Sun, 6 December 2020

6:30 pm - 7:30 pm GMT

How to Thrive in a Difficult Winter

Stanford Psychologist Kari Leibowitz

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Winter is coming, but despair is not inevitable. Join Stanford psychologist Kari Leibowitz as she teaches us the strategies used by Scandinavians to thrive in the long polar night.

Many of us already feel a sense of dread at the prospect of a long winter under lockdown, isolated from friends and family and without recourse to the bars, cinemas and restaurants that might otherwise fill the season’s long, dark nights.

But lethargy and low mood are not inevitable consequences of this difficult time. Scandinavians face days with sporadic sunlight and extremes of cold, and yet are regularly reported to be among the happiest people on earth. In this livestream talk from Stanford psychologist Kari Leibowitz, you’ll find out why – and what you can do to harness their attitudes and fortify yourself through the coming months.

Kari travelled to the world’s northernmost university in Tromso, Norway – 200 miles north of the Artic Circle – to study how the town’s residents are able to experience months without sun yet thrive during the winter.

The answer lies in a ‘positive winter mindset’, embracing the opportunities, rituals and psychological comforts that we would otherwise never notice or cultivate. Kari joins How To Academy to explore how each of us can put those strategies into practice.

A positive mindset is not a panacea for the stresses of 2020 – but with careful and serious application, the right psychological tools can help us become more resilient in the days to come.

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Kari Leibowitz

Psychologist, Stanford University

Kari Leibowitz is a Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellow in Psychology at Stanford University. Her research in the Stanford Mind & Body Lab helps us understand and harness mindsets to improve health and well-being. Kari received her undergraduate degree from Emory University, and her work has taken her all over the world as she organized the 2013 visit of the Dalai Lama to Emory, co-led three summers of Emory’s Tibetan Mind/Body Sciences study abroad program in India, and served as a U.S.-Norway Fulbright scholar. As a Fulbright scholar, Kari lived in Tromsø, Norway, north of the Arctic Circle, and studied mindsets about winter. In addition to publishing her academic work in numerous peer-reviewed outlets, Kari has delivered talks and workshops on how to leverage the power of mindset to international audiences. Her writing on this topic has appeared in The Atlantic and The New York Times.