Happy New Year! It’s that time again to reflect on the year gone by and make resolutions for the year ahead. While I haven’t set myself any concrete goals for 2017, I want to try my hardest to take better care of myself both physically and mentally this year. A huge part of being mentally healthier is to take a look at the positives in my life and be thankful for the little things.
I came across this wonderful post on Twitter from the co-founder of one of my favourite blogs, The Olive Fox, and it inspired me to join in. Like Suzy, I want to take the time to look back each week and choose five things that made me smile, no matter how small they may be. Not only do I hope this will help inspire positivity and improve my wellbeing, it’ll also encourage me to write at least once a week – something I’ve been wanting to do for some time. So, without further ado, here’s five things that made me smile this week…
1) Returning to work
While this may have been dreaded by many, I actually enjoyed heading back to work on Tuesday after being off for over a fortnight during the festive period. It’s the longest I’ve been away from work since I started and I longed for the routine again!
For all Christmas is a time for relaxation and indulgence, it’s also a time that can put you out of sorts. I eat, drink and sleep way more than I do any other time throughout the year and the lack of structure to my days makes me agitated. So, it was a welcome relief to set my alarm and head back to work again.
2) Seeing my colleagues
It wasn’t just the routine I was looking forward to, it was seeing my colleagues again. My work is a brilliantly social place and I’ve made some great friends there over the past year, so I couldn’t wait to catch up with them. It was especially nice to head out for lunch to Wagamama on Friday with some of the girls from my team for a much-needed blether.
3) Hitting the gym again
Part of taking better care of myself physically involves getting fitter, so I headed back to the gym this week after a couple months away. I managed to go five days out of seven, which I hope I can maintain all month. I often struggle to maintain my motivation, but I really hope I remember how good it feels after a workout when all I want to do is curl up in a blanket on the couch!
4) Going out for dinner
On Saturday, I went out for dinner with one of my best friends to a new bar in Edinburgh, the Barrelhouse. Opened three weeks ago, the place is most definitely still in the teething stage, but it’s got potential and the staff are lovely. Sadly, the food didn’t impress me much – not least because they served it on a baking tray?! But, it was great to head out for the night and survive my first sober night in a pub in a long time!
5) Seeing A Monster Calls
I awoke on Sunday and vowed to have a day dedicated to myself. While this sounds selfish, it’s so important to embrace your own company sometimes and be content by yourself. I started by heading to Starbucks for breakfast, while reading a few chapters of my latest book, Frances Hardinge’s Cuckoo Song.
Afterwards, I went to see A Monster Calls, which I’ve heard nothing but good things about. I can’t remember the last time I was so utterly moved by a movie – I’m unashamed to say I was sobbing. While it is adapted from Patrick Ness’ Young Adult novel, I was pleased to see that the majority of the audience weren’t children. I’m a strong advocate that good stories should be enjoyed by everyone, regardless of age. I can’t recommend this film enough – go see it and take tissues…