There is no denying it. January was really hard for a lot of us. Even in a great year it can be a miserable month! So when you couple it with a Level 5 Lockdown, it’s only natural that your sanity would start to take a kicking! However they do say that it is darkest just before the dawn. Spring is now upon us and fingers crossed the future is starting to look a lot brighter.
Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain – Vivian Green.
For those of you who are perfectly happy to chill in front of Netflix, I salute you and I send you back to enjoy doing that in peace and quiet! (Please make sure to PM me any great recommendations before you go!). This post is for those of you like myself that unfortunately have a pestering voice that wants you to have something to show when lockdown is finally over!
Here are 8 easy therapeutic lockdown projects that will help you feel good and maybe even help with the bank balance:
1. A New Addition
Why not make a fabulous addition to your home that money can’t buy. Whatever your skillset there has to be lockdown project that you could take on. Why not paint a picture, build a small piece of furniture or make your own home furnishing? If like myself, you cannot draw a straight line, there are still lots of great ideas that appeal to your skillset! Are you good at jigsaw puzzles? Why not make and frame a jigsaw puzzle. It would be a beautiful addition to your house for years to come. Depending on the size, you won’t have to dish out for large framing costs. Your typical 1,000 piece jigsaw is really easy to stick together (feel free to PM me if you want any tips!) and you can buy a standard cost effective frame from any Irish homeware supplier.
2. Spring Clean
I hate to be obvious but the best way to feel good is to do a Spring Clean! If it doesn’t make you feel good, get rid of it! (That applies to all areas of your life!). The famous Marie Kondo believes that everything in your home should make you feel joy. Ok I know how loopy that sounds and I wish you could have seen my mothers reaction when I relayed my new found wisdom to her! But I have tried it for myself. I can honestly say it did feel great to get rid of some things in my home that I associate with unhappy times. Clear out all that negative energy and I promise you’ll feel the better for it. What’s more, you might even be able to make some money by selling your preloved goods online.
3. Wardrobe Warrior
Right this might be a tough one for many of you and I understand! I pride myself in being a bit of a style guru (my friends may well laugh at that one!) and have an impressive wardrobe collection. My personal fix was never shoes or bags, it was dresses. I have two whole wardrobes full to the brim with dresses and no where to go! So it’s time for me to be realistic. 90% of my collection has been on lockdown for nearly a year now. It’s time to do a haul. If you have gone without it for over a year and if it isn’t a fabulous piece that makes you feel like a queen, then it has to go! What’s more, there are lots of great sites out there that you can sell your clothing on. Just make sure to do your research in terms of commission etc.
4. Stop the Leak!
One of the easiest ways to save money is to go through your bank accounts. We recently downloaded our January bank transactions into excel and got some shocks! We could not believe some of the recurring expenses that we did not even realise we had subscribed to. While they are small monthly amounts, when you add all of these unnecessary costs over the whole year you could save thousands. That will well cover your summer holidays when the day finally comes! Stopping any leakage and re-examining your costs is surprisingly uplifting and the summer cocktails that you can buy with the redirected money will be even more therapeutic!
5. Surround your home with joy
The one upside to the past year has been the lessons we have learned on what is really important. If like me, you have decades worth of amazing memories and hilarious moments with friends and family, why not finally take the time to print out your photos. You will subconsciously smile every time you walk past your favourite memories. There are lots of great websites that offer great rates so you should be able to surround your home with joy very cost effectively.
6. Change it Up
Is there a room in your house that you are just not loving? You can easily change the look and feel of a whole room without spending any money. Try clearing out clutter, changing the layout, swapping furnishings to change the colour scheme and vibe in the room etc. Also be aware of furniture layout. Having a large wardrobe right inside the door of a room can feel like an energy block. Try changing the furniture alignment and you might be surprised at how easily a room can look and feel completely different.
7. Cook up a Storm
I’ve never been a very strong cook but I do come from a family of great bakers and there is something very special about the feeling that baking can give you. Not only is the process itself quite therapeutic but the end product will bring a great sense of achievement (or a great laugh!). We have always used time as an excuse for not baking and cooking. There are endless fantastic recipes online. What’s more my ‘Back to Basics – Food & Drink’ series features a number of simple delicious recipes that can get you started with simple every day ingredients and tools.
8. Take the Plunge
My free Career series will help you to establish what you want to achieve in life and how to get there from where you are now. I will also profile some fantastic Irish people who are truly living what they love every day. This year has really shown us what is important and life is too short to be unhappy. Why not finally take the plunge and use this time to start your own business or upskill to prepare you to make a career transition or progression.
Other simple tips to help you beat the lockdown blues:
- Circle of Love – Call or facetime at least one friend or family member daily. No texting or emailing.
- Make someone else smile – I fully appreciate that we must all adhere to social distancing but we do not need to treat each other with complete distain and terror. We can still salute each other or do a good deed without feeling like the world is going to stop! Try and be kind to everyone that you encounter, you have no idea what they are going through. You may well be the only person they meet all day.
- Exercise – As much as I hate to admit it it’s very hard to beat the feeling of achievement after exercise. The endorphins really do make you feel happier and you don’t have to run a marathon to get that feeling. Set your own personal goal. whatever your fitness level and get to it!
- Gratitude – Start a gratitude journal and every day write down at least one thing that you are grateful for. If you are feeling very low on a particular day, try turning ‘I have to’ into ‘I get to’.
- Task of the Day – It’s amazing how the lockdown days can melt into one another without you every feeling like you have achieved anything. Every night set one realistic achievable task/goal for the next day. It will you help with giving a sense of purpose to the day and the sense of achievement when you have it done will be great.
I hope this post has helped in some shape or form. If it has please be sure to let me know and if you are taking one on of these projects I would only love you to share the fruits of your labour!