2020 has been an incredibly tough year and none of us are sure what 2021 will bring – especially in the UK, where new restrictions are gradually rolling out across the country. I live in London, where we’ve spent Christmas in Tier 4 Lockdown… giving me the perfect chance to really examine how I am relaxing and recharging for the year ahead.
Candles, Diffusers, & HOME FRAGRANCE
I’m sure I’m not alone in my obsession with candles. Thankfully, those in my life know me well – and Christmas saw an influx of great-smelling candles. I’ll be filling my room with these gorgeous fragrances to combat the darkness in the evenings, as well as the minor mould problem my very old bedroom currently has. I’m particularly loving the festive yankee candles at the moment, although soy candles from places like Etsy are more environmentally friendly.
INVEST IN HOBBIES
By investing, I don’t mean spending money, I mean investing time. If your hobbies don’t get much attention during the working week, take this festive season as an opportunity to fall back in love with those hobbies. It might be painting, video games, working on a novel, candle making – anything that makes you happy, and is something different from working, is an essential part of relaxing.
GENTLE (OR NOT-SO-GENTLE) EXERCISE
The one thing I dislike about winter is how dark it gets in the evenings – giving me limited time to go for walks or runs. I want to get into jogging properly – but the hours I work, and the commute I have at the moment, aren’t best suited for winter jogging. So, this festive season I am going to be getting my fair share of gentle exercise and appreciating the natural beauty of the parks and open spaces I have nearby.
Depending on coronavirus restrictions in your area, you may be able to go out and volunteer over the festive period. This is a thoughtful way to give back to your community and make the best of spare time over Christmas. In the UK, Do-it.org is an excellent service, listing a wide range of volunteering opportunities for local charities – many of which can be done remotely, or with minimal travel.
LOOK OUT FOR OTHERS
Christmas can be a happy, peaceful time for many – but it can also be distressing, lonely, and frightening for others. Reach out to your friends and family this Christmas – especially those you haven’t heard from in a while. Need help for yourself? Mind is an amazing charity dedicated to supporting anyone through a rough patch.