January, you were an odd one - it's not gone all to plan but it's had nice moments and others not so fab, but I'll blame that on hormones and Mars or Mercury or something because I just can. I feel I've spent most of it strapped to a laptop without doing anything conclusive, but that's life sometimes and you have to do your best.
With that in mind, I've been sat reflecting on what I've learnt from January and how I'd do it differently if it happened again, and it's generally a lot of 'chill out and do what you can but it's still plausabile to have free time' - yay!
• Don't get wrapped up in stuff
Is so and so ignoring me? Why can't I find the right spec for something? Will something become available? Do I have time to see friends? Can I get into London? ANXIOUS MENTAL STRESS - it's the thing that tires me out the most, thinking. Brilliant. I've felt my mind clouded up, frantic and withdrawing me from things, but even just telling someone a small worry and having their reassurance (even when you know you're silly, or justified) makes it all a bit easier to deal with - so just talk to people.
• There is time to allocate for fun things
I don't know whether it was having Zoe stay here or something else, but I felt inspired to do 'fun things' aka getting takeaway pizza and Indian food and going to see La La Land at the cinema. I did more in 5 days than 5 months, madness! But aside from that blip, I had a few opportunities I could have seen people, done things I'd wanted to do but felt clouded as I said - now I know I can afford a day or few hours during a busy time to say 'no, that's enough, I want something fun' and do creative things or see friends.
• It's okay to focus all your creative energy on one thing
Despite having a lot on, the creative juices I had flowing all went onto one thing - my stop motion haul, which will be up this evening and took around 2 week to finish with all the animation and photos! I said at the beginning of the year I would be happy to skip an upload (or three, cough) for something more creatively fulfilling, and despite the tiny irk of not uploading often, I felt okay with it and am SO proud of the video.
• Having a third person around is nice
As I said, Zoe stayed with me the last week of January and it was really nice - I have a good relationship with my mum in that I can talk to her about a lot, but it felt nice that there was someone else who knew me well who understood other things better or the stuff you don't talk to your mum about; it's different to just texting a pal like 'hey I'm annoyed about this' and when I did get flustered over something I just went and flopped on her bed and rambled off my worries, and it was immediate response and appreciation to help. It's something you forget, being 'interactive' via phones all the time, and has made me absolutely want to talk face to face to more people for a long amount of time regularly. Or maybe Zoe could just live with me, that would be fine too ;)
• You CAN make your skin look and feel good
Oh my lord, I never realised how much my skin flares up until these past few days - I nailed a really good skincare routine that without seeing a dermatologist to really suck the gunk out, my pores looked clear, my skin felt smooth and soft and I was like 'yeah I can walk outside with just my brows done and glasses on'. Nah, not now; full on hormonal eruption and I'm not feeling it! But the stark contrast has showed me my skin CAN look good and if I stick to the routine of care it can calm down and restore confidence.
Here's to February not going so fast and getting stuff done - unlock some 2017 achievements!
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