7 ways I've made my life better this month (January edition)

Here it is. 2015 and another fresh start.

I posted 7 ways I've made my life better this month back in October and I received the most hits I've ever had on a blog post during 2014. It scared me a little clicking publish on that one given the transparency, but I guess it worked. So here's round 2.

7 ways I've made January a little less blue.

1. I'm reading a book a month

That's 12 books in 2015. Not a huge amount, but a challenge for me being a really slow reader. This month is The Accidental Creative by Todd Henry (a recommendation from Carrie) and it's one brilliant read to kick off the year - it's jam packed full of techniques for having better, more actionable ideas. Next on my list is Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In (one to check out if you're career-driven) I can't wait to get learning.

2. Yoga (of the Fifi variety) happens three times a week

I can't help it, I'm a wannabe Erin Motz. The girl is perfect. Since finding out about the bad yogi movement she's behind, it made me see how accessible yoga is for anyone. I wouldn't say I'm on a health kick, more of a brain kick this year, in search of more focus and less dependency on google and all things digital. Hatha yoga is allowing me to become more, y'know, mindful. I use youtube videos to get my confidence up before I'll eventually find a class or yoga retreat so if you see any gooduns, let me know :)

3. I've made my kitchen a better equipped place to create healthier meals... FINALLY!

When you don't have the right ingredients in the cupboard, or the right tools to work with, it's easy to just reach for a bag of crisps and have that for din dins saving all the effort (and washing up) of cooking from scratch. Neil & I paid a visit to Home Sense in Brighton and did a big home haul of things we needed for better ease of meal creation.

A non-slip chopping board, that's LIGHT! has been the biggest change in our lives. Who else starts screaming when you're trying to cut up an onion and end up cutting yourself because your cheap chopping board won't stay put? What's worse is washing them up, they weigh a tonne. This Home Sense bamboo one is a dream to use and I find myself wanting to prepare meals now. We were also in need of a new peeler for similar reasons (I'm accident prone) and I let out a squeak of delight finding this copper one for only a fiver. I copper. Life's too short to live with crappy kitchenware, stop your frustration and do a home haul.

4.  I now drink only green tea & water*

This is another change I've made for my brain kick. Green tea is much lower in caffeine and packed with anti-oxidants. I make up a travel mug of it to start my day and it keeps me toasty on my walk to work. So far I feel much more switched on, healthier and hydrated so I aim to keep this up throughout the year. Cutting back drastically on alcohol too, I'm convinced, has made my brain function better and I'm more articulate.

*unless it's Friday night - a girl gotta have a small glass of wine.

5. Introduced more creativity through colouring

Yes, I've bought an actual colouring book. For grown ups though. I'll talk more about this in a post I have planned, but in the book I mentioned in point 1, the author highly recommends incorporating "unnecessary creating" into your week to give you something to look forward to inside a hectic weekly rhythm. So far I don't know how much good it's doing for my overall creativity levels, but I'm loving any excuse to act like a kid again. 

6. I began writing a gratitude journal 

The idea came about when I was given a beautiful Orla Kiely print notebook from Neil's ma & pa for Christmas. I found myself not wanting to write the usual notes, telephone numbers and to-do lists inside it, it was too nice to ruin with my scribbles. So I did exactly what I'm trying to not do so much of, and googled "what shall I write in my new diary" (Google dictates my life). Lots of cool ideas came up, but this I loved. Every night I think of 3 things I'm thankful for that day and write them down. It'll be fun to read through them when I'm old and grey.

7. I've been waking up at 7.30am every morning (including weekends)

Not gunna lie, this has been the hardest of the 7. Trying to get back into a proper routine after the Christmas holidays was difficult. I don't have to leave the house for work until about 9am, and I used to wake up as close to 9 as I could. But since 2015 came, this has all changed. I now have time to tidy the house, pop to the sorting office or potter around before the day begins and it feels FANTASTIC!

What goals have you reached in January?