At what point does it become passé to keep wishing every friend, relative and stranger we meet a Happy New Year? Now that we are back at work? When the Christmas Tree comes down? (on which note, which one exactly IS the 12th night?) Seriously - it's something I'd really like to know.
Anyway. Happy or not, it is unmistakably a new year. I know this because I watched Jools Holland on TV, lit sparklers the one night of the year besides Guy Fawkes that it's appropriate, and recreated 'Fenton!!!!!' in Richmond Park the following day. Late in the day, natsch - I saw 2016 out (good riddance, quite frankly) with a small selection of my closest friends and a very large, irresponsibly champagne-fuelled buffet.
When I woke up on the first day of 2017, my Australian friend Jaimee (her heritage is of no relevance tbf) made me a brunch of oven chips and ketchup with a side of roast potatoes in bed and announced she was going Vegan for Jan. Veganuary. Apparently that's a thing. I am not joining her. I am, however, doing dry January-from-the-3rd. Because really I'd already drunk champagne at midnight on the 1st, and the 2nd seemed too soon.
They're not exactly resolutions, more challenges, but the sentiment is similar. The trouble with resolutions and such like, though, is that they can be overly big-picture, and thus hard to achieve. So this year, I've set myself some more practical, realistic goals..
1. Get organised - Organisation is not my strong point. It's a running joke in my family that I must be the only person to have passed out of Sandhurst and still manage to exist in boarderline chaos. If you're like me, you need a Hello Day planner. It organises literally everything for you, down to monitoring your daily water intake. I'm just getting started with it, but it seems fairly organisational-fool-proof.
2. Stick to a routine - I'm sure I'm not alone in the lament that it's difficult to have routine when you're freelance. Because I am a little bit lazy, the call of my OnePiece is sometimes too great to ignore if there isn't something I really need to do. This year, I'm setting myself a wake-up time and a schedule. Next I just need to fight the snooze button..
3. Prioritise happiness - Obvious to some, but it's been a slow dawning on me just how important happiness is. I've always been quick to write it off as an unneceary extra, but actually I found toward the end of the year that being in a positive headplace means that I am so, much more productive, pro-active and focused.
4. Eat positively - When I was in Bali, the temptation was huge to break my gluten-free regime and binge on tasty treats. By day five it was getting me down that everyone else could eat things I couldn't, and frankly it was pretty much all I could think about. It was the elephant in the room of my head. Then I found a gluten-free place called Shelter Café. The menu was so varied and the dishes so beautifully colourful that I was no longer focused on the negative of having to be gluten-free, but on the positive of being exposed to such enjoyable food.
5. Listen body cues - I am pretty militant with my fitness, and have a tendency to take workouts too far, particularly when I'm stressed. Towards the end of last year, I started training at Duo Chelsea, and am learning about the different muscle groups and skilful ways of increasing performance rather than just punishing my body. I've even started stretching post-training. Acknowledging the need to work on something as subtle as flexibility is a huge step for me.
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