It’s the 2nd of January as I write this, it’s raining and the house is dark despite it being the middle of the day. Yes, the weather is pretty much the same as December but in January there’s no pretty Christmas tree and hordes of wrapping paper and bows to distract you. In January there’s tax returns, dark mornings and kale instead.
Honestly, I’ve said this before, I struggle with January – as I’m sure a lot of people do. If I’m not careful I could spend the whole month cuddled up in my new dressing gown on the sofa watching re-runs of friends and eating leftover Christmas chocolate. It’s not an awful way to spend a month but it does seem a bit of a waste.
So I’ve put together a few ideas of what helps me throughout dreary months like this in the hope it might help anyone else too, and together we will make it through to the bright twinkly light that is February 1st.
- Don’t say goodbye to all your fairy lights. I’ve got one of those big light up trees from Wilko in my living room all year round and it’s pretty in a festive but non-festive way. Pop a little set in a glass jar, or drape some around your bookcase to add a lovely cosy feel to your home.
- Same angle as the fairy lights – light candles! Everyone gets candles for Christmas and the time to start making the most of them is January. I’ve got a Snowflake Cookie Yankee candle burning right now and its lovely
- Don’t deny yourself anything. Well…in moderation… I’ve found in the past that I do better with goals like ‘I want to be more healthy’ and ‘drink more water’ than ‘this year I will lose 2 stone and never touch a carb again’ which for about 10 years was basically what I’d write in a diary on January 1st. Just make goals that don’t make you downright miserable to achieve them.
- Find a new show to watch. We’ve just started Stranger Things! Way behind all the cool people I know, but we’re totally addicted and I like a little T.V distraction. I’m also super excited for the return of Dancing on Ice!
- Break a sweat. I’m training for the London Marathon so this year I really don’t have an excuse with this one – I can’t not get out there! A couple of years ago I followed a ’30 days of yoga’ plan by Yoga with Adriene on YouTube which was really great and she does one every year. Last year I was training for a half marathon and trying to do lots of hiit workouts. There are loads of these workouts on YouTube – you don’t need to pay for a snazzy gym membership to be able to exercise a bit. Try The Body Coach or Millionaire Hoy.
- Make lists with stuff you can tick off. Write everything on a list! Even things like fill and empty the dishwasher or hang the washing out. Obviously you need to put the bigger stuff on it too – do tax return, write blog post, do 9 mile run etc. – but if you intersperse it with smaller things you’ll feel like you’ve achieved more and will feel more motivated to finish the list. Well it works for me anyway! And it doesn’t matter if you don’t finish the list – just pop the bits you didn’t do onto tomorrow’s list. Or you could make a list for the week as well as the day… the list possibilities are endless!
- And finally, make a coffee and cake date. Take a couple of hours, meet a friend, get a good coffee and order whichever cake makes your mouth water the most. Life is far too short to be virtuous all day every day. My favourite place at the moment is a new place in Chatham, Kent called The Original Flake and Bake. Get on their Instagram and you’ll understand immediately why nearly every day I wonder when I can make my next visit. The cake in this picture was SO GOOD.
So that’s it. That’s my plan of action to make it through the month without ending up hibernating. I’m always up for trying new ideas so let me know what you plan on doing to get through January – or maybe you love January and don’t get why I’m kicking up such a fuss! What’s your secret?!
Anyway, enjoy your kale and your cake 🙂