If you live anywhere north of U.S. Interstate 80, which runs across the country, you know it hasn’t stopped snowing for months. Nor has it melted. And with snow and the cold it brings, irregular weather patterns bring wind. A lot of it.

If you live in the Midwest, the windiest states in the U.S., you know that windy weather is always available.

And this blog is for you.

It appears the Netherlanders have a philosophy of walking head-on into the wind to relieve stress. Without knowing the Dutch have a name for it, I have one girlfriend (only one) that will walk into the wind with me. We like to imagine all of that full frontal wind is buffing us into a facial. Sometimes the wind gets so strong where we live that it blows our hair straight back, to the point that we aren’t even moving forward. We’re teeth gnashing, yelling at the wind, like “c’mon is that all you got?!” Then we give into it, and walk backwards for relief.

“Uitwaaien” is the Dutch word for walking straight on into the wind. The Netherlands is near the sea and flat. With not many obstacles to hold the wind back, there’s a lot of it. Scandinavians are among the happiest people in the world, some social scientists say, so it’s no wonder that walking into the wind has various names around those countries. Capitalize on what you have most of, give it a name and turn it into a plus.

The very best part of “uitwaaien”, (pronounced “out vahyn”; no English equivalent. If you know someone named Vaughan, you can have some fun with this word.) …is coming back indoors where you can “hygge”, (pronounced “hoo-guh”), also a Dutch word for getting cozy, with a fire, hot cocoa and a blanky.

You get the picture. We’re working up to the origin of “hug.”

When I’m “hygge-ing”, I turn on my air diffuser. Time for some luscious lavender essential oil after having conquered the elements, and calling it “exercise.” Yay team!

Or in the event, I’m feeling recharged and renewed from the elements, I’ll use peppermint essential oil in my air diffuser to keep things rolling.

Taking the middle road, there’s the essential oils of clary sage, or ylang ylang. Add a few drops in a water-based diffuser, and its hygge time, with cache.

All of these essential oils and the Nordish style essential oil bamboo cube diffuser can be found at The Gift of Scent.

A regular routine of this and you can join the Danes and Netherlanders as among the happiest people in the world. After all, life is a study in contrasts. Conquer the elements and you’re ready for whatever is supposed to be next!

Now go. Against the wind!

Jean VanGrey for TheGiftofScent.com