We can all agree that this year didn’t work out as well as we wanted it to. Well, not unless you hastily set up a PPE company in March and ripped off the dozy UK Government for millions of pounds.
It’s been harder for some than others but as someone wiser than me said: “We’re all in the same storm, just on different ships”.
Some days are going to be hard, no matter what your situation.
I’m a huge advocate of all the work people are doing towards mental health awareness and combating one of the UK’s biggest killers – depression.
But I also think that it’s OK, and actually healthy, to some days just be sad.
I don’t think sadness and feeling down are necessarily a bad thing to feel occasionally. It doesn’t always mean you’re depressed and need help.
Some days you feel sad because you are sad and we just need to get through those days the best we can, even if it means crying into a jar of Nutella while watching Tipping Point.
Some moments are like that and that’s fine.
Other days are absolutely wonderful and you don’t want them to end. But if every day was like that, it wouldn’t make them special days now, would it?
Bad days are bad days, but if we didn’t have them you wouldn’t notice the great days. If I was American I’d say something about “rainstorms” and “rainbows” here, but I’m not so I won’t.
I often think that a lot of our mental health problems come from “the gap”. The gap is what I call the bit in our minds that separates a) the person we are, from b) the person we think we should be.
So the way to fix this gap, is the way we fix any gap: we fill it. Fill it with things that are going to make us happy.
You might like to go for walks and listen to nature – birds tweeting, breeze in the trees, or the gentle sound of running water, as someone holds up their child to wee against a dry stone wall. Peaceful.
Gardening. There’s nothing better for the soul than a day spent digging your flowerbeds. It almost makes the days you spend in crippling agony afterwards seem totally worth it.
Exercise, fishing, writing, learn a language or an instrument. Or, and this is as equally important as doing something, do absolutely nowt. Nada. Sod all.
There’s no shame in giving yourself some time to not be stressed, not get anxious and not worry about what might or might not happen.
Yes, your friends may have decorated their houses, done an online photography course and lost a stone, but you’ve completed Netflix and worked your way through all the different flavours of Magnums, so who’s the real winner?