It has been said that depression is dwelling on the past, while anxiety is worrying about the future. But it's hard not to worry about the future when the whole world seems to be on fast-forward. Easter eggs in shops in February; Christmas tunes on the tannoy since October; now, all December, I keep seeing adverts for January's Dryathlon.
New Year's Resolutions seem to revolve around abstinence. Don't do this. Don't drink that. Don't you DARE eat that, else you will be this... It's actually a very negative concept if you approach it in that manner. The words 'don't' and 'shouldn't' aren't very helpful to anyone, let alone an anxious girl. I've learnt lately how powerful language can be.
Here's an idea... Instead of saying "I'm going to get fit" say "I'm going to treat myself to a healthy holiday". It could be a spa retreat, a yoga trip abroad, a walking holiday. In my experience, the best results come from a bootcamp break, but everyone is different I suppose.
Fancy a spa? You may get vouchers for Christmas, if not check out SpaBreaks.com, which lists deals all over the country, including Champneys, Macdonald and Bannatyne breaks.
If your budget can stretch to something overseas, check out Healthandfitnesstravel.com for spa, yoga, detox and activity breaks.
In the UK, many hotels now offer active breaks. In my hometown of Bournemouth, the Queens Hotel hosts bootcamps throughout January from £278pp. Stay for a weekend or a whole week. Week-long stays include a free spa treatment, so it's two healthy holidays in one.
Worried about your finances? Instead of saying "I'm going to spend less" say "I'm going to save more" or "I'm going to save smarter". Most of us are off work now until the fifth - why not spend half a day looking at loans, utility bills and cashback sites?
I'm moving shortly, so I will be looking into eco upgrades for my home via SaveMoneyCutCarbon.com; if I do buy anything in the January sales, it will be through TopCashback.co.uk - I didn't realise The Apple Store is on there (I could have got a lot of cashback last year had I'd known...)
Instead of saying "I'm going to give up drinking/overeating/smoking" say "I'm going to have more drink-free/healthy eating/smoke-free days". My hypnotherapy programme a specific tape for alcohol-free-days (AFDs). It's about rewarding yourself for the small changes - each day without alcohol is a victory.
Instead of saying "I'm going to be less depressed/anxious" say "I'm going to do one thing every day that makes me happy". I put this to the test last week - I'm already 'over Christmas' you see - and it was surprisingly easy...
Going green and buying LED bulbs for my new flat. I've never been an eco warrior but according to SaveMoneyCutCarbon.com LED spotlights mean up to 90% savings on lighting bills. Plus LED lights last well over a decade. Green skills AND lean bills.
Phoning a friend who I could tell from social media was very stressed out over work/Christmas
Had an AFD, and made chutney instead (the chopping part was very therapeutic). I found a fab recipe for using up leftover tomatoes on ChefSavvy.com.
Babysat a super-cute four-year-old so her mum could Christmas shop in peace.
Huge respect to everyone doing the Dryathlon but that's not for me... I will donate though. So as it's already January, in my head, I guess the NEXT thing to do is sort a date for Valentine's Day...