Here are 5 things that I’ve found inspirational as we started 2021 – I hope they have a similar effect on you.
1. How Changing your Story can Change your life - Ted Talk - Lori Gottlieb
In her 16 minute talk therapist Lori Gottlieb speaks about the importance of recognising your story and discovering your set of editing tools that allow you to change it. Obviously this is something I find particularly interesting, especially since I work with stories as a writer, enjoy stories in the theatre, and explore personal stories as a coach. If nothing else I took the phrase ‘Unreliable Narrator’ from her brilliant talk, she uses this to describe human beings. We are all the unreliable narrators of our own lives, telling a story heavily biased to our own perspective.
2. The Bullet Journal - bulletjournal.com
This journal is for anyone who likes to be organised - or wishes to be more organised. It’s a simple strategy and one I’ve used for a while now. The best part is that you can use any notebook to do it. At the site above you can watch videos guiding you through the basics which I really liked as I am trying my best not to purchase frivolously this month. So I found a blank notebook and set to work. This has helped me organise my time, my thoughts and made me feel so much more productive as I can see exactly what needs to be done, and how much I’ve already achieved.
3. Create Events
I’m a big fan of creating traditions, in our house we carve pumpkins and watch Hocus Pocus on Halloween. We watch V for Vendetta on Bonfire Night, interrupting it frequently to run outside and watch the fireworks, and the Christmas Tree always goes up the first week of December. This year we have scoured the calendar for events, anything and everything we can celebrate we plan to. It’s so important to enjoy the little things, especially at this time of the year, plus booking in events gives us all something to look forward to. So here are some to get you started, how will you celebrate;
Chinese New Year on 12 Feb
St David’s Day on 1 Mar
First Day of Spring 20 Mar
4. Try New Things
This month I have vowed to eat healthily, so rather than getting stuck in my old habits of cooking the same old meals each month I have mastered new things. For example, I love recipe books but mostly I end up looking at the pictures and reading the recipes, with very little actual cooking. This month I have been using them to create wonderful new meals. Every Sunday I open the book on a random page and then I attempt to make the new dish. Yes, there have been some disasters but only in the aesthetics, everything was edible. Plus my culinary confidence is improving, so it’s win win! If you want to start a similar venture I recommend BBC Good Food as a starting point https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/
5. I am light by India.Arie from the album Songversation: Medicine https://youtu.be/ism8dBjxKvc
After a particularly stressful day my sister sent me this song, I didn't know what to expect but it certainly wasn’t the peaceful, evocative, emotionally intelligent performance I listened to. Since that first listen I’ve used it as a way to centre myself, almost a form of meditation. Have a listen, close your eyes, breathe deeply, and may all your stress and cares fly away.