- Read more. Aim to read at least one book per month. If you start a book, finish it. Even if you don’t like it…
- Write more. You have such a creative mind, and you’re letting it go to waste. Write at least one piece of poetry, and one short-story per month. Get in to the habit of writing, then when you feel more confident, start writing that book…
- Every night, write a bullet point list containing three things that you are grateful for on that day.
- Teach Gning how to play chess and backgammon. At least once a month, play a game of each.
- Start keeping the house. Properly. No more “I’ll do it in a minute…” – if it needs doing, do it now. Stop leaving everything until later – it’ll only pile up, and mean more work for you.
Today is the last day of 2017.
It’s been a rather eventful year, and one that I can actually say, hasn’t been a bad one. Granted, there have been several ups and downs, but this year has been one of the better ones, over the past few.
A few reflections of 2017…
- Gning started year one in school.
- Donut started nursery.
- I finished working at the DWP – one of the hardest, yet satisfying decisions of my life.
- The hubby started full-time work.
- Donuts’ speech is coming along beautifully.
- Gning passed his “Stage 1” in swimming.
- My depression seems to have stabilised somewhat, and I’m relying less and less on my medication.
- I have restarted the old way of communicating, in “penpalling” (good old fashioned pens, paper, envelopes and stamps).
- I made a new, very dear friend.
When I was younger, I used to always make resolutions for the upcoming new year, however, as more than likely everyone else, they never usually lasted longer than a week or two.
For 2018, however, I have decided on a couple…
- Read more. I would like to read at least one book per calendar month.
- Write more. Not letters, but write more poetry, and short stories – just like I used to “pre-children”.
So, without further ado, I bid thee farewell 2017, and 2018, I welcome you with open arms.
I could write a post about how important it is to take yourself off for 30 minute strolls, meditating, yoga, and checking your posture and all that, but hey, where’s the fun in that?
So instead, this is built up of the things that I believe you should aim for every single day. The little things that can make an average, dull day into a great day. Into a productive day. Into a day that you actually appreciated.
It’s not always all that easy to actually follow the ‘live every day like it’s your last’ motto, but you can at least get to the end of every day, as you’re rolling about your crumpled bed sheets trying not to let the whir of anxieties and emails and conversations send you into a bout of insomnia, and feel like you succeeded. Feel like you did an alright job of being a living, breathing human.
1. Compliment someone
Tell your colleague you love her sassy new strappy heels from Zara, tell someone you adore their blog post and that it’s the best thing you’ve read all week, text your husband and tell him how much you bloody well love him. Be nice because it’s so easy to be nice and it instantly, instantly, within that second, changes someone’s day. We could all do with being told we’re great every once in a while, right?
2. Read something
Even if it’s just the link to that BBC news article someone shared on your Facebook. Everything I read, be it a blog post, a newspaper article or a physical book, gives me something to take away with me and think about – something that adds to my brain and way of thinking in some way. A thought, a new understanding of something or a new turn of phrase that I want to incorporate into my own words. It’s so easy to stop reading once you leave education, but sometimes, I find myself losing an entire hour because I am so engrossed in the articles on Buzzfeed (yep – even though it’s just junk, it’s funny junk, and it makes me laugh).
3. Wash your skin with a flannel
I mean sure, you’re technically supposed to do it twice a day, but face it. We are just too busy to have to stick to certain rules, aren’t we?
Lather up dry skin with a cleanser, or a gentle soap, and then remove with a flannel that’s been run under warm/hot water. Skin feels instantly the cleanest it’s been since 1998.
4. Eat something damn good
Not good like a chia seed, avocado, or spoon of almond butter that’s full of the good shit, but something that genuinely makes your mouth do a little saliva orgasm, something that seriously makes you happy.
I’m not saying like, eat a McDonald’s Double Cheeseburger every day and just lie about and count your rolls, but have something, even if it’s a Diet Coke or bag of salt n sweet popcorn that gets you a little bit excited. What’s the point of being alive if you can’t make the most of ALL 5 senses?
5. Go an hour without your phone
Or your emails. Have some time away from work and social media. Lie and fester in front of the TV, take yourself out on a stroll to buy ice cream… Or what about an undistracted conversation with your other half? Have you time without comparison or addiction or any of that rubbish stuff that your iPhone is engulfed in, because, let’s face it – the real world is so much more interesting.
6. Dream big
I like to remind myself of all the things I want from the future. I think about where I’d like to be in a year, I think about things I’d like to get done that week, I think about where I’d like to go on my next holiday, or about a career change – all the big stuff. I don’t feel like it weighs me down with pressure to succeed, I feel like it keeps me on the right path and stands as a constant reminder of why I need to get out of bed and be the best I can.
7. Write something
Write a page in a diary, write a blog post, write a sentence on a post it note that makes you smile – an inspirational quote, a joke, something you’ve seen on Twitter that you MUST remember.
Handwriting constantly excites me in a world that’s so computer obsessed. Even if it’s an ‘I love you’ scrawl on a piece of paper, make sure you get your emotions and your thoughts out of your head, for some damned reason it just clears your brain and makes everything make sense. Besides, who doesn’t love a bit of #PenmanshipPorn
8. Share a story
Have social time with real people who know YOU – your favourite people, the people who make you smile even when it feels like there’s nothing to smile about. Face to face is my favourite and definitely the most rewarding on your wellbeing, even if it’s a 15 minute catch-up and story-telling session over coffee.
If not? You’ve always got facebook messenger, Skype and Facetime. Seeing a friendly face instantly gives a little surge of happy hormones through your blood stream.
9. Find happiness
Some days are shit. Like really shit. It rains, you get told off at work, a bill appears out of nowhere and then what, how are you going to pay your rent and then you have an argument with your other half or kids. You want to cry yourself into a 3-month long hibernation. But, buried deep into every day is a little big of magic.
There is always, always something to be grateful for, something that can make a situation less aggressively hindering on your soul. Maybe it’s fresh bed sheets, maybe it’s watching Frozen for the 20th time, maybe it’s just a gigantic bowl of pasta.
If you can’t find even the tiniest ray of light, the tiniest fleeting moment to be thankful for, to smile for, then what’s the point?
With only 20 minutes to go before day 6 is over, I had only just remembered to make this post, so I almost didn’t keep up my end of the bargain. To which I have already failed one of my 40 day challenges, so I’d be rather annoyed if I failed both. So, let’s see… I gave up coffee and said I would blog once a day. Guess which one I failed on?
To be fair, even though I have broken my ‘no coffee’ pact to myself, I can at least take comfort in knowing that I have already cut back a lot. Where as I was on several cups a day, I had one yesterday, and one today. Already a huge improvement.
I had my first physio session today, to try to see what on earth is going on with my shoulder. My physiotherapist thinks that the pain and discomfort that I am suffering seems to be related to the muscles on the right side of my neck rather than my shoulder, so I can ‘resume normal activities with my arm’. Like I had stopped doing what I normally do anyway… Ha ha. I was sent on my way with some exercises to do at home, and in the workplace, and with an appointment for some ‘hands-on’ therapy. I would love to say that I’m getting massages for free, but it’s not quite like that. I’m going to have her manipulate my neck and surrounding muscles only. I guess I’ll have to pay for a full Swedish/Aromatherapy massage myself then.
Eek! 15 minutes before this post has to be published…!!
Mr. Gning is staying at his grandparents tonight. He does near enough every Monday. It all started off because hubby and I used to do our training on a Monday evening, so Gning had to be minded by my parents, so it only made sense that he stayed (seen as we never got home until 9pm, and my ‘rents would drop him off about 9.30pm). Now it’s deemed the norm for all of us. He gets to spend the night in ‘grandads bed’, gets to play with nanny, and hubby and I can be as lazy as we want. Then, on the Tuesday, Gning is taken out for the day (somewhere different every time, like the park, the zoo, the forest, etc.), and I stay in bed until lunch time!! Unless we have something we need to do.
At the moment, hubby is ‘playing’ on the xbox one. He’s trying his hand at creating worlds and games on ‘Project Spark beta’. It looks pretty good, although not my thing. I’ve wasted 90 minutes in the Interpals chat room… A couple of people in there who I normally talk to, but nothing interesting going on.
I’ve just looked up to the TV to see what hubbys’ ‘world’ is like, and have just witnessed a murder!! He’s just beaten a cartoon squirrel to death! Oh my. This is just too much…
Then again… It does look evil.
There you go… 4 minutes left of day 6!! See you tomorrow ❤