How I manage the January blues

As someone who has challenging mental health, January can be a very tricky month for me. Is it just me, or do you find the whole year ahead of you, an overwhelming thought? Here are somethings I find useful to create a positive start to the year…

Spend some time outside every day.

Yes I know it’s not appealing to go outdoors in the cold and damp, but getting outside in the garden, or going for a little walk can really help boost your mood. I’m trying to get outside in our garden as often as possible even if it’s just for 10 minutes. There has been quite a lot to do in the garden to tidy up a bit. I must stress that I haven’t tidied up too much(!) as it’s important to leave some protection for newly emerging growth, and of course, there will be bugs and wildlife looking for a cosy home overwinter.

Take up a new hobby (or not!)

I'm not a big believer in New Years resolutions. I’d rather focus on what we can add to our lives than take away. So maybe think about taking up a new hobby or adding something positive to your usual routine. It could be at dance class, something creative, or even a lunchtime walk with your colleagues. It can feel like there's pressure to be doing something new or making resolutions at this time of year – but if now is not the right time, don’t beat yourself up about it. Go at your own pace.

Be kind to yourself

If you feel a lack of motivation at this time of year, you’re not alone! I've been trying to write this blog for about three weeks! However, I have been very gentle with myself this January, and worked some shorter days than I would normally. I know I'm very lucky to be able to work flexibly, and that this is not an option for the majority. But when I wasn’t my own boss, I tried to do something I enjoyed every day. It could have been as simple as cosying up under a blanket watching a box set, a cup of tea in the garden or a chat with a friend. Looking after yourself is key at this time of year. 

Try to live in the moment

Full disclosure – I’m appalling at this, but trying to be better!

It’s the start of the year, so we must plan! If you’re like me, the need to plan out the year is strong indeed. Meeting up with friends, family, planning holidays, back to school and activities for the kids, and that’s before we’ve even factored in our jobs! It can feel really overwhelming. I have OCD and planning makes me feel in control. But therapy has taught me that if you’re constantly planning for the future, you don’t enjoy the present. That’s not to say all planning is bad, of course it isn’t! Just don’t do it all at once, and leave some room for spontaneity!

Wishing you all a very happy and healthy 2022,

With love,

Lucy x

How I manage the January blues