12:19 PM

Professor Offers Tips for Keeping Your Cool During Arctic Blast


By Mike Emery

The Monday following Valentine's Day, Houston experienced a historic cold snap bringing ice and snow to the region. In addition to chilly temperatures, Houstonians also have had to contend with power outages throughout the day. Add a lingering pandemic to the equation, and mid-February might be a perfect storm for anxiety.

UHD News contacted Dr. Susan Henney, Professor of Psychology (who also is featured in the latest issue of UHD Magazine) for tips on how Gators and their families can cope with additional stress brought on by the cold. Below are five tips to help people keep their cool during a particularly frosty February.

1) Attitude matters to coping. It’s unrealistic to say “stay positive” during an event like this. Sometimes the best you can do is say “this will be over soon”— that is enough!

2) Stay mentally active. Books, board games and puzzles engage the mind, stave off boredom and keep the focus off of what’s going on.

3) Have fun with the family. If you have kids, remember back to what YOU liked to do during times like this. Make hot chocolate together. Build a living room fort. Devise a household treasure hunt.

4) Stay connected. We know from the pandemic times that maintaining social connections is key to mental health. Spend some time today reaching out—text, call, Zoom or however you can connect with a friend, family, or even long lost acquaintances! It helps you to defocus off of your concerns and provides moments of relaxation and calm

5) Be kind to yourself. If all you want to do is stay in bed or binge watch tv or comb through social media...that’s ok, too!

About the University of Houston-Downtown

The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is the second-largest university in Houston and has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974. As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive, four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates approximately 14,000 students, boasts more than 66,000 alumni, and offers 45 bachelor’s degrees, 12 master’s degrees, and 19 online programs within four colleges: Marilyn Davies College of Business, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Public Service, and College of Sciences and Technology. UHD has one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas.

U.S. News and World Report ranked UHD among the nation’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Applied Administration and Best Online Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice, as well as a Top Performer in Social Mobility. The Wall Street Journal/College Pulse ranked UHD one of the best colleges in the U.S. for its 2024 rankings, with notable distinctions: No. 1 for diversity (tied) and No. 3 for student experience. The University is designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, a Minority-Serving Institution, and a Military Friendly School. For more information on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit uhd.edu.