This week’s blizzard was fun for some (my son, for example, missed two days of school), and a hassle for many (have you heard the complaints of the people in “The Outer Boroughs” of New York City as they waited for snow plows that didn’t come?). Yet, for all, I think we can learn some lessons from the blizzard of December 2010. On my block at home, a number of us gathered outside early Monday morning to clear away snow from our sidewalks and driveways. In fact, though the work was hard and the block is always friendly, snowy times seem to bring out the best in my friends and neighbors. Later that night, as I warmed my still frozen toes near the fireplace and my body with a little scotch, I got to thinking about lessons from that day.

So, here they are – Five Things We Can Learn from Snow:
“¢ You can wait a bit to tackle a problem but, if you wait too long, the problem – like the snow – only gets harder.
“¢ Sustained activity can yield results but, once in awhile, take a break (sometimes with a cup of hot coffee or cocoa) – you’ll be able to work longer and maybe even live longer.
“¢ When faced with a ton of challenges (or snow), look beyond yourself – you’re likely to find someone else who can use your help, and giving it will help them and you feel better.
“¢ “We are fa-mi-ly!” – my son, and our neighbors’ sons and my sisters-in-laws’ daughters all pitched in. Kids need to know they can be part of the solution and, frankly, we couldn’t have gotten it done without them.
“¢ Ah, “the Power of the Network” – our friends and we know that we can rely on each other’s goodwill because we’ve built up trust over time. Think about this the next time a business associate asks you for a favor or just wants some of your time. The payback is priceless.

I hate snow. I hate shoveling snow even more. But, like much of life, there’s something to be learned from every experience. I hope you find some warm lessons in this blog. Happy Winter, and have a healthy, productive, and satisfying 2011!