New Jerseyans chilled by Monday night and Tuesday morning's extreme cold weather just need a little perspective, according to one expert who says these temperatures only come around every 20 years at least.

Sven Zacek, Getty Images

The state's climatologist, Rutgers professor David A. Robinson, is New Jersey's weather scorekeeper, recording and tracking annual weather trends including highs and lows.

"Essentially, the coldest air on the planet has made its way down from Canada into the upper Midwest, and it's heading east," Robinson said.

For Tuesday, residents can expect high temperatures to approach record low marks. The Garden State is likely going to stay in the teens, according to Robinson, and a lot of the state's records for Jan. 7 are in the upper teens to around 20 degrees.

And while we are all shivering through this cold snap, Robinson said New Jersey isn't even seeing the worst of it. Many Plains states, and areas all the way down to the Gulf Coast, have been hit with even colder weather. Robinson predicts we will get "sideswiped" by that.

The saving grace, not only for New Jersey but for the rest of the country as well, is that the cold blast will be relatively short-lived. Residents should see a pretty pronounced warmup over the next several days.