Hi everyone and happy new year! I hope you had a wonderful festive period. We had such a topsy-turvy 2022 but we settled into our new home towards the end of last year and it was absolutely magical to spend Christmas in our new space. I hope that the year ahead is far less complicated and brings a lot more peace for our little family. I hope the same for you too!
Lately, I’ve been reading so many motivating books to give me a delicious appetite to conquer this year. I’m looking forward to making 2023 the year of endless opportunities. Brene Brown’s “The Gifts of Imperfection,” Gretchen Rubin’s “The Happiness Project” and “The Danish Way of Parenting” by Jessica Alexander and Iben Sandahl have been incredible resources for all sorts of wonderful inspiration.
One of the things that I have already set about incorporating into my life is spending more time outdoors. Having had a very colicky little baby, I quickly realised how calming being outside could be for children. Through my reading, it seems that adults respond the same way to the outdoors. I now spend much more time outside which is so wonderful for calming and re-energising my mind. You may remember this post (5 Reasons To Spend More Time Outdoors) in which I encouraged spending more time outdoors and it still holds true today, maybe even more so.
I’ve also discovered through my readings that an element of play is essential, rather than a luxury, to living a wholehearted life. If you’re anything like me, you wear the fact that you have no time to play as a badge of honour which I’ve learned is completely wrong. In fact, it’s a toxic trait that I probably picked up while working in a law firm. Ensuring that my son has plenty of time to play freely encourages curiousity and imagination. Play also enables the development of sensory and social skills. As an adult, play is a mood booster and very important for stimulating creativity which can give you fresh ideas when you head back to work which means you are likely to be more productive for having taken the time for “play.”
Movement is something I’ve always considered important for body and mind and the reading material I’ve been through empathises the studies proving this as a fact. Whether the movement is something as simple as walking, it has so many incredible benefits. While I’d definitely like to get back into my pre-motherhood workout routine to build up strength in my body, any type of movement is great for destressing, the release of endorphins and the obvious physical benefit.
If you’ve read my post on the 5 motivational books that will change your life, you will know that I’m a big fan of Atomic Habits by James Clear and The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy and from the principles that they teach, I now combine all three elements of the above: (i) the outdoors; (ii) play; and (iii) movement. What a wonderful way of habit-stacking! Living in such a beautiful natural environment, it’s actually a true pleasure to be able to spend time outside looking at the mountains and the trees from our garden or walking paths and we love to go feed the swans, sit on the swings or take our dog for a walk. We laugh, we feel closer together and we create such special family moments when we compound these enriching and very simple habits and they have become so valuable to us. Most importantly, the time we have together doing these activities with the elimination of devices and interruptions allows us to be completely present which is quite rare these days.
I could go into much more depth about the other areas that I’m going to be focusing on this year but I think these three probably lay the foundation for all the goodness to flow into the other aspects of life. Let me know what you think of these three very easy steps towards making 2023 the year of endless opportunities.