How are you doing this week? Raring to go, rested and refreshed from the break or exhausted from nearly two years’ global pandemic life and all THAT entails while also setting unrealistic expectations for yourself? This blog post has some self care ideas for you.
I don’t know about you but every year, I think that the magical time between Christmas and New Year – Twixtmas – will somehow stretch and I can get every mm of my life and work organised.
Climbing my personal getting organised Everest.
Imaginary Me, I thought, would (for example) sort through thousands of emails and photos so I’d be starting 2022 with a clean slate.
Real Life Me DID get through a fair few (almost a thousand photos).
And I DID (as I aim to do every year) organise and clean every mm of my home. I started this before my end of November birthday and it STILL overwhelmed me on several occasions.
But I didn’t do most of my delusional Twixtmas To Do list.
And I realise it’s better this way.
Sustainable small steps
I’ve been meaning to organise all my photos and emails for ages. I continue to stop to take pictures of everything (I have a PUDDLES folder in my phone. Puddles – but they’re so beautiful).
Having spent time with loved ones, taking some time out and enjoying a much needed break over the holidays, I didn’t.
I’m not going to even share the rest of my Twixtmas To Do List because it’s so obviously delusional (it included massive progress on two separate book projects and several other things).
This ‘failure’ has actually been quite liberating and I’ve built in a small section of time (between 10 and 30 minutes each evening) where I do a little re emails and photos. I’m making progress (1000 pics down, just 3000 to go. On a phone I got last summer).
What are YOUR This Year Will Be Different goals?
You don’t need to share them with anyone but I encourage you to own your own potentially deluded Imaginary You accomplishments.
Laugh – gently and affectionately – at yourself and reassess.
How might you make them less Everesty and more local hill hike or even stroll?
If you intended to become the kind of person who manages to batch cook so you ALWAYS have something delicious and nutritious to hand (another of my own delusions), maybe ponder ways in which you can put together one small and simple tasty quick meal.
We’re nearly two years into A GLOBAL PANDEMIC
On the one hand, you probably don’t need reminding of this fact.
On the other, you MAY be putting undue pressure on yourself while also juggling the mental and emotional load of (at time of writing) not knowing when your kids are going back to school and a gazillion other little things that take their toll.
Stop delaying the little things that will help you feel better
I’ve been listening to a lot of audio books lately (your library might also offer the amazing BorrowBox app). One was Meg Myers Morgan’s Everything is Negotiable where she takes inspiration from her small children as well as what she’s learned from her students and own life.
As she described her beach house fantasy, I almost cried with laughter and empathy.
But I realised that while I don’t imagine a beach house, I have had to retrain myself to build daily treats into my life instead of constantly striving and endlessly pushing myself.
Don’t know when you’ll next get a holiday? Get into the habit of scheduling regular breaks. Even just a few hours.
I’ve done this for the whole year in my gorgeous new 2022 desk diary. Blocking out little regular breaks.
In some ways, am prouder of myself for doing this for the whole year (for the first time in more than 17 years as my own boss) as be if I’d sorted through all those emails and photos.
If you’re in a New Year Slump, LET YOURSELF WALLOW
Give yourself a break.
You might have been ill yourself. You may have lost loved ones. You may be at odds with loved ones. You may have spent time with your favourite people but feel terrible about increasing numbers.
Our second Covid Christmas and New Year is, of course, taking a toll.
Instead of imagining you should be racing straight out of the gate of 2022, let yourself move slowly,
Congratulating yourself for having survived.
Reassessing what you want and what’s important to you.
How might you use this potentially sluggish, lost and sorrowful time to envision a newer way of being if that feels appropriate for YOU?
Grab your journal or a piece of paper and without censoring yourself, write or doodle the first thing that springs to mind:
How does it feel to REALLY imagine this new way of being?
What will help you get there?
What might you need to let go of?
What’s your biggest obstacle?
Who might help?
What else springs to mind?
Use this to help you shape your Sankalpa
Let your unconscious and conscious minds work in harmony as you RELAX into making it a reality.
A Sankalpa (a positive intention or resolve that really comes from the heart) can be really helpful (the Feel Better Every Day online membership now includes a weekly Yoga Nidra with ongoing attention on Sankalpas and there are lots of free Yoga Nidras on the site as well as many by other people online – experiment and find what helps YOU feel relaxed and energised. Recharged, refreshed and at peace).
There’s also my book, 365 Ways to Feel Better: Self-care Ideas for Embodied Wellbeing (2017) – with more on Yoga Nidra and Sankalpas and a self care idea for each day of the year. Ideal to dip in and out of or to start at the beginning with January.
Feel free to email email@example.com to let me know ONE KIND THING you’re going to do for yourself this week.
And please feel free to share this post on your social media etc so others who may find it helpful can read it.
Wishing you a wondrous New Year!