Today’s Blue Monday.
Before I even knew it was a ‘thing’, I definitely knew it was a thing. We all recognise it, don’t we? Christmas is done, the parties are over, the pretty sparkly lights are back in the loft. Work’s busier than you can handle, the weather is bloody miserable, and payday is still such a very very long way away.
Frankly, if payday wasn’t quite so far off (and the credit card wasn’t still sweating from its Christmas workout) then I’d be heading off for a dose of sunshine and warmth on my bones pronto.
But sadly, finances being what they are, I’m having to look closer than the Caribbean for a little mid-winter cheer.
And actually – sometimes that’s all it takes. It’s no surprise that holiday booking season is right NOW – just looking at all those pictures of beaches and sunshine and mountains and villas and sunshine makes us feel a little brighter and happier about the coming months.
So I’m trying a little something new this year. Instead of retreating to the sofa with all the leftover Christmas chocolates, I’m planning something a bit more proactive. I know from past experience that actually, if you have something fun to look forward to, the here and now just don’t feel quite so glum. And I can thank the folks at One4All Gift card, who encouraged me to think about what I might do with the chance of a whole stress-free day off to myself.
So, first up – what do I need?
I’ll tell you what I need.
This woman needs a day off.
I need a day free from anyone asking for a drink/snack/help with finding a missing pair of shoes.
A day off from emails, deadlines and incessant social media.
A day off from… talking, actually. Maybe it’s just me, but when I get in a funk I actually can’t be bothered to open my mouth. The words form in my brain, but my mouth just can’t find the energy to open and say them.
So SSsshhhh. Yes, you. Hush up.
I do not wish to be talking.
And maybe, just maybe… a little something for myself? In a house which is perennially a bit short on the cash front, spontaneous selfish treats are just not in good form. Long gone are the days when I’d head out for a few hours of browsing and buying what took my fancy. These days items are bought by necessity, not by desire; birthday and Christmas gifts aside, we only get new shoes & jeans when the old ones become too disreputable-looking to be let out in public.
So. It’s January. The sales are on. And I’m booking some ‘me’ time. I figure that as long as they’re in the sales, new shoes are okay, yes? Pick good ones (HELLO Clarks!), and they’ll be in use for a few years. Obviously I’ll not be actually talking to any sales assistants, but I’ll probably smile at them and nod a thanks. Probably.
Next – I need to shut out the world; take some tome OUT to simply unwind, relax and be me. But I don’t want to just sit around all day – that can come later. I’m thinking a good long brisk walk, all alone. I never seem to walk alone any more! Walking where *I* fancy, at whatever speed *I* choose. Probably down by the coast – nothing blows away the cobwebs like a good sea wind.
I might just indulge in a smartwatch to track my steps too – that way I can feel refreshed AND smug at the exercise accidentally accomplished.
And then finally comes the sit back and relax bit. I’m thinking of wandering over to Laithwaites to see if they can recommend any delicious Italian reds for me to curl up by the fire with while I pop a little Jimmuy Stewart in the DVD player. Perhaps I’ll give Harvey a 56th showing…
(actually – this has been a lot of fun, and in all seriousness my genuinely glum mood has been lifted just planning what I’m going to do with ‘my’ day. Big Love to One4All for making me do it – and helping me see that a little ‘me’ time isn’t a selfishly decadent treat, but that actually it’s a little self-care which will benefit the whole family when I return refreshed, re-energised and ready for what the next few months can throw at me.
If you have a friend, sister, or Mum who you know is in need of a little pick me up, why not treat her with a gift card yourself – have some fun planning your own day off together. How would you spend it?)