Hello! I am back!
I get up, get ready, come down to start work and make myself a lemon and ginger tonic that I got from Lydia Millen - click here for recipe - and it gives me a great boost. I am more productive and organised
I have been quiet on this blog for so long now. No one reason, more like a collection of reasons. I have had lots going on in my personal life, but not things I felt able to blog about, I have been working on an HR Diploma. And then of course there is the COVID-19 pandemic.
Now while this has not impacted my daily life so much as in I have always worked from home, so I continued to do so, my daughter was, and still is, home learning. My husband was furloughed for a few weeks, so he was home then too. So, like many millions of others, my life looked very different over the last (almost) year.
While we have not been directly negatively by a positive covid test, we have heard of those close to us who have. We have been as careful as we can be. Our daughter went back to school in September, which we didn't really want to do, but she needed to go back for her mental health and her education.
A few days before the school Christmas break we decided to home school her for those days, as there was a positive case in her year bubble and we didn't want anything to jeopardise us being able to see my sister and her family on one of the designated days over Christmas - only to find out days later that Boris was cancelling those days for Tier 4. We were Tier 4.
I will admit that cancellation really hit me hard. I was more upset by this than any other rules/restrictions we had already faced.
But despite that we had a lovely quiet Christmas break.
I don't like making New Years resolutions, as I am hard on myself if I don't stick to them. So this year I bought a Legend Planner, and created a vision board.
So now I have weekly, monthly and 3 monthly goals. It helps me to break things down this way and I get a buzz ticking off even the smallest thing.
I have a weekly habit tracker, which I find really helpful. So I put things on there like:
- drink at least 1 litre of water a day
- lemon & ginger tonic
- take tablet
And at the end of each day I tick off the ones that I have done. this also helps with my monthly goals - for example, in January one of my goals was to exercise at least 12 times, and meditate at least 12 times. When I look back at my goals for January I can use my habit tracker to help to keep track.
One of the things I really wanted to work on this year is managing my stress levels better. I had lots of things causing me stress in the last year and at times it really affected me badly. I did try meditation and some self care sessions, and towards the end of the year I started acupuncture, but they had to shut due to COVID.
So, the meditation I find really relaxing and I try to do this most evenings before bed. I also try to set aside one day a week for self care - that could include going for a walk, having a nice bath with bubbles and salts and a bath bomb as well if i feel like it! It also includes catching up on some of my favourite YouTube channels while having a cup of tea.
These are all things that help me to relax and de-stress.
I also started back with Slimming World around November time last year, and I am still going with that. I am enjoying eating so much more healthily and really being conscious of what I am eating. I do still treat myself, and I don't even beat myself up over it. It's not a blip, or a mistake - it's a choice to eat something "bad" and I know that I can't eat like that all the time so I don't feel guilty about it. I just eat it and move on. I just make sure that every meal or every day is not like that and that I will go back to feeling sluggish and unhealthy if I eat badly all the time.
I am also aware that being so overweight could be extremely harmful to being should I contract COVID-19. So eating well and exercising are helping me to stay healthy in that regard too.
I still read every night before I go to sleep. One - because I really enjoy reading, and Two - because it helps me get to sleep. Decent sleep is one thing I have struggled to get for a long time. Sometimes it is because I have neck pain or a headache, sometimes it is because I am worrying about something. But whatever it is, it affects me really negatively. It's not even that I can't get to sleep - it's that I can't stay asleep, and that broken sleep is so bad for me personally.
To help with the sleep issues I try to relax in the evenings, and I also drink Pukka Night Time Tea - which tastes really good and I think does actually help, unless it is just a placebo effect.
Another big change I made last year to cut down on stress was to look at the people in my life and if they were having a negative impact on me personally I cut them out. It might sound a bit harsh to some but to me it was necessary. I don't want those in my life who bring constant negative energy or who just aren't nice people. It did cause some initial stress and nastiness from those who I cut out, but from my perspective it was very positive and I honestly haven't looked back. Those people are continuing their toxic way of life, and all I can think of is that Karma is a bitch.
I have made a conscious effort to get up a bit earlier each morning so that I have time to get dressed properly for work - not just in my PJs or loungewear which had become my staple wardrobe more often than not last year - and to also do my hair and makeup, because it makes me feel good. It makes me feel more ready for the day ahead.
I get up, get ready, come down to start work and make myself a lemon and ginger tonic that I got from Lydia Millen - click here for recipe - and it gives me a great boost. I am more productive and organised!
So all in all I am pretty happy with how my personal 2021 has started. It is not an ideal time in this world, with this global pandemic - but I am safe, happy and have my family and friends and that is what I need to remember.
I hope you and your loved ones are staying safe and that you are ok. But it is good to remember that it is ok not to be ok. I have spent a lot of days not being ok, and that is fine. Sometimes you just need to feel that way, but also try and find things that make you feel good, reduce your stress levels or at least make it easier to manage that stress more easily.
Let me know any great ways you have of reducing/managing stress.