Hello and welcome to the start of a brand-new year!
After the hustle, bustle and general chaos that precedes Christmas, I am most definitely one for the calm after the storm. Think tree down, twinkling lights out and leftover wrapping paper stored away – to stay with previous papers that I have forgotten said location of.
As the clock striking twelve and the last echoes of Auld Lang Syne fade into the night, we find ourselves caught in the annual whirlwind of resolutions, reflections and perhaps a touch of the winter blues. Fear not, for this blog is your ticket to a mirthful, serene entry into the new year. Let's embark on a journey of embracing the English January with a cup of tea in one hand and a chuckle in the other!
Mindful Intentions – Because Resolutions are So Last Year!
Ah, resolutions. Those ambitious plans that usually last as long as a snowflake in an English summer. With that in mind, why not trade in those lofty resolutions for something a bit more laid-back – how’s about a spot ofmindful intentions.
Think of them as the ‘casual Fridays’ of personal development. There is no need for strict rules – oh no, simply sprinkle a dash of mindfulness into your daily life and watch the magic unfold. Bonus points if you do it with a raised pinkie finger.
Countryside Strolls – The Only Gym Membership You Won’t Cancel
The rise of gym memberships in January is as predictable as us Brits apologising for everything (sorry about that!). Instead of subjecting yourself to fluorescent lights and elliptical machines, opt for the natural gym that is the glorious countryside of our country. The great outdoors provides the perfect setting to work on your health and fitness. Walking trails are beyond numerous, with locations set amidst breathtaking scenery that will make you forgot the sterile environment of the gym in no time.
Deliberately sunny picture - because it's raining whilst I post!
Cosy Evenings In – Because FOMO is So Last Season
Do you find that social obligations weigh you down? You know, standing around in other people’s homes, with no real room to relax, absolutely no chairs to sit down on or even the lure of good food.
Well, go grab your pj’s, make something that you want to eat and climb onto that sofa, adorned with cushions and blankets and get comfy. Cozy evenings in are officially in vogue, so you can forget the pressure to attend every event and snuggle up with your favouriteblanket instead. Whether it's a gripping novel, a classic film, or observing your huge dog's attempts to get on your lap, there’s nothing like a night in to remind you that staying home is, and should be, the new going out.
Mindful Reflections – The Gratitude Journal, Minus the Overthinking
Reflecting on the past year is essential, but really – no one needs a detailed analysis that rivals a detective solving a mystery. Keep it light and breezy. Create a gratitude journal that highlights the good stuff. Did your massive dog realise that she was not, in fact, a cat? Did your offspring remember to put their plate in the dishwasher? Did you manage to avoid stepping on that particularly pointy LEGO piece? Did someone praise your efforts without being prompted?
Celebrate the wins, whether they were big or small and don’t forget to chuckle at life's quirks.
Hygge – Because It’s Fun to Say, and Even More Fun to Do
If you haven’t heard of the word Hygge, then let me enlighten you and your world. Our friends across The North Sea are the creators of all things Hygge and it simply requires you to embrace your inner Dane and allow the wonder of Hygge into your life.
In a nutshell, Hygge, pronounced “Hooga” is about taking time away from the daily rush to reset, relax and renew. Spending time with or without other people in order to enjoy quiet happiness. Dating from around 1800, the mindset of Hygge centres on prolonged feelings of contentment.
No one wants to be a basket case, rushing around and never fully achieving every damn item on that list. If that sounds familiar, why not try some hygge yourself. Light some candles, wrap yourself in the softest blanket you can find and indulge in your favourite comfort food. It’s like a warm hug for your soul, minus that awkward part when you wonder how long the hug should last.
So, there you have it, dear readers – a light-heartedguide to navigating January with humour, mindfulness and a touch of English charm. May your teacup be forever full, your laughter contagious and your journey into the new year as delightful as a well-timed, "cheerio" from a friendly neighbour.
January can be for many, a little bit of a bleak time. We start craving some sun and dreams and plans start to take shape for future trips away. I find that even if I have no imminent plans, pictures of beaches and the sea really do settle my mind. Whatever it is you have planned for this month, I hope that you can welcome some calm into your life. If needs be, practice using the word, ‘no’, make time for some green therapy and claim your space on that sofa.
Happy New Year, dear reader, until next time.