It’s cold. It’s dark. And I’m tired. I haven’t been sleeping well recently, but it’s not just that. I’m weary to my very soul. I’m tired of lockdown. Tired of winter. Tired of the book I’m writing. Tired of not seeing the people I love. Just tired.
We’re all feeling it. But right now it’s 8pm, I’m behind with work, and I reluctantly dragged myself back to my study to finish my weekly post here on Medium. February falls as four whole, neat weeks this year, and I’d been determined to use them well.
I’m a coach. I help talented…
In October, aware that my usual bleak mid-winter mood would probably be darker during quarantine, I decided to post something I was grateful for, on my personal Facebook feed, every day for 100 days.
Then on day two, my extremely needy cat Amber, who was sitting in her usual place on my desk, watching my hands move across the keyboard and hoping for attention.
And increasing numbers of employers are saying they never expect their staff to come back into the office full-time.
So it’s worth now examining where you work, how you work — and investing a little to do it more easily. If you are in full-time employment, your company might help with this. If you’re not, set yourself up to work as healthily as possible, investing bit by bit.
You don’t need the perfect set-up. Although I now have a room of my own to work in (bliss!), my study certainly doesn’t look like those perfect Pinterest mood boards. The person…
The answer is nearly always now. We all have projects we dream of doing. But we’re waiting for the time to be right.
We tell ourselves we need to think about it a little more, to wait until we’ve got more time, more space, more money. Until our day job is less demanding, the to-do list is done, the children are a little older or we finally have a workspace to ourselves..
We convince ourselves that we need more experience to start, more skills, an expensive bit of kit that we can’t quite afford right now. We need to hang…
Weirdly, this was 21 less than the year before, but then we didn’t go on holiday or travel at all, and I often found it hard to concentrate — especially in those anxious months of the first lockdown.
I frequently found myself reading several pages, then having to go back and read them again. Or lying on the sofa at night watching Netflix, constantly refreshing newsfeeds on my iPad. (Wonder how I put on so much weight?)
To be clear, these weren’t all published in 2020. They’re just books I read in the last 12 months, fact and fiction.
I’m almost exactly 10kg heavier than I was a year ago. I’ve spent more time on Zoom than I thought was possible. I’ve been to London just twice since March, and once to Birmingham to spend a couple of hours with my mum. Other than that, like most of us, I’ve spent most of this year under house arrest — only without an ankle bracelet. Or much hope of parole.
But there have been hidden gifts. We’ve learned to appreciate everyday things we once took for granted, and discover what’s really important. …
At the end of December, most of us come up with a well-meaning list of goals and resolutions. And by the middle of January, most of us have again failed to keep them.
This doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you. Or any of us. We just need to explore new ways of finding focus — especially in 2021, when it’s harder than ever to make firm plans.
January is an awful month for a fresh start, in the northern hemisphere. The nights are long and dark. It’s cold outside. We’re normally tired from the whirl of holiday parties…
We all probably want to put it behind us as soon as possible, but because of that, it’s still worth taking some time to reflect on it. I do this every year, and always find it useful. But this time my process was a little different. So here’s how to review 2020.
It probably won’t be as full as previous years! But nonetheless, make a note of everything you’ve achieved, everything you’re proud of, everything you’ve learned.
Acknowledge the small victories, and let go of what could have been, without a global pandemic.
We’ve all found resilience we didn’t know…
Because it’s never far away, when we’re doing our work. At some point in your creative cycle — maybe even at several points — The Fear will come.
There’s no avoiding this. It happens to all of us. The key is knowing how to deal with it.
If you’re looking for an easy, affordable gift for a small child, the digital version of the charming picture book The Phlunk is beautiful, and works seamlessly on an iPad. With gorgeous illustrations by Tori Elliott and read by its author, Lou Rhodes, it’s about a cute, cat-like alien with huge ears that enable it to hear everything children are doing on Earth.
Lou and I have know each other for a long time now. When we first met, I was editor of The Face, and she worked for the magazine as a photographer. …