Welcome to 2022

When I was younger, the New Year seemed to mean more. Like, it felt there was new possibilities, anything could happen. Then, over the last few years, stuff has been rubbish, for everyone, and now a new year has been welcomed with a sigh and a roll of eyes. It’s feels more like ‘here we go again’, rather than ‘more new adventures’. And it’s all a bit sad.

Having the privilege to greet another year, is something a person should feel thankful for. Something that not everyone is able to do. So it’s nice to stop, and recognise where you are and what you do have. I, for instance, am surrounded by people I love, have a roof over my head, and am getting closer to finding some resolution to the health problems I’ve plagued with for years. I don’t recognise it enough, I always look at the negative, but a person shouldn’t feel guilty for feeling grateful.

I think that is something that I always want to change, with each progressive year. Look at the good things that happened, as my brain does have a tendency to focus on the negative side of life. It’s hard though. I sometimes think the world around us, wants us to focus on the negative things, and it would just be to tell us more stuff. Because that’s how things work.

So, this year. I am trying to recognise the nice things more. Try and train my brain to really enjoy the good stuff. Things like taking myself out to lunch, grabbing a coffee with friends, or relaxing with a good book. Things, that don’t mean a lot, in the grand scheme of things, but things that help make the tediousness of life, a little more bearable. Because right now, the most common way I make myself feel better, is to spend money. It is usually on crap, like things I don’t need. Packets of crisps, cakes, notebook, pens, magazines, fizzy juice, i just throw money out the window.

So, in line with making myself recognise the good things in life, I want to control my finances more. So making myself happy without spending money. I am also looking to improve my credit score, by sorting out some old debts. I don’t know if you were aware, but depression and anxiety leaves me being a little ‘head in the sand’ when it comes to dealing with things like debt. So yesterday, on New Years Day, I got in contact with companies, and set up payment plans. I also started a new savings account. These small steps can hopefully help me in the future, as I can get rid of this shadow which seems to overlap everything.

Anyway. That’s my plans. Nothing too solid, which I think is best in current circumstances, but definite improvements.

I wish all readers a very happy 2022, and I hope you achieve all you set out to achieve.

Welcome 2021

I swear every year gets faster. It feels like I have only just written the first post of 2020, and it’s already a year ago. Obviously, 2020 didn’t really live up to anyone’s expectations, with COVID scuppering most people’s plans for the year. But we survived, we got through it, so hooray for us.

At the start of every year, I always try to create resolutions, plans to try and live by. It never happens. It sometimes starts well, but quickly falls apart. Usually, by the end of January, most plans have been given up, and I seem resolved that maybe life won’t get any better. As if, I have already hit peak life, that things are ‘all down’ from here. Which is a rather pessimistic way to feel about things.

But, 2021 is still a blank slate. A fresh start. A perfect opportunity to try and make the self-penned book of 2021 better than that of 2020. Not that it’s hard. As you can tell, from this and other things I have posted, I am pretty defeatist, pretty negative. If things don’t go the way I intend, I find it really hard to keep going. Lots of hobbies, books, tv shows and more end up abandoned for this very reason.

It’s why, I thought hard about what I would like to make better about 2021. And I, after speaking to my doctor, the biggest thing I need to change is my mindset. To be more positive, to not let the bad stuff knock me down every time. Which is hard, because my rubbish mental health has me constantly in the ‘down’ mood. So, I am going to spend time trying to find things that naturally lift my mood. Working out is good for that, apparently, and it would always be good for my joints, which are becoming a bigger problem as I get older.

I think what is important is not give up. As I often ‘don’t see the point’ of continuing anything once the initial novelty has gone. So, to try and not be so defeatist will be a huge challenge for me, and I do think that it will be a positive change for me. Just keep going, plodding away, no matter what happens. Will see what happens, I guess.

Hope that anyone reading this has a fantastic 2021.

My 2020 Vision

Happy New Year.

What do I want for the year?

Try to experience life in the moment: I sometimes worry too much about what could happen, rather than focus on what is actually happening. It is something created by my anxiety, but I want to try and change how I think about stuff. It seems hard, but it’s worth a try.

Get healthier: this is on a lot of people’s resolution list. I don’t care about weight really, I just want to feel better. I am trying Veganuary, in the hope I will feel better. Luckily a lot of people are trying it, so there is so much support. Again, I might not get it perfect, but it has to start from somewhere.

Draw more: I think I used this last year. I have purchased an Apple Pencil to use on my iPad, so that I can draw digitally. I just need to practice more. It’s always hard using a new tool, but it is something a wee bit exciting. If anything decent happens, I’ll share on here.

Write more: this is definitely something I did say last year. But 2019 kicked me in the butt quite hard. My mental health was rubbish, and that lead to me not wanting to do much at all. So, I hope that I post more than I did in 2019, which shouldn’t be too hard.

That’s it.

I like giving myself vague targets, because it makes it slightly easier to aim for. Because sometimes, if you fall too far behind, you just give up. Or I do.

Another Finished Chapter

It’s the last day of 2019, something I feel very happy about. The year has been a nightmare, but it also marks the end of a decade.

As I am trying to be a little kinder to myself, and my mental wellbeing, I find the idea of starting anew quite refreshing. Mentally it allows me to shut off to everything that happened before, and focus on something new. Or it is supposed to anyway. But like the numerous notebooks I buy, start using, and don’t finish, sometimes the efforts are in vain.

I lost some family this year, and the pain is still here. It doesn’t feel right going into a new year without them. It feels a little like stepping into the future is also stepping away from them. It sounds silly, but it’s a thought that does run though my head.

There have also been good bits this year. Travelled to both Italy and Cyprus, both countries I had never visited before. I did other adventures in Scotland, with some amazing people. I continued working on liking myself and how to manage my mental health.

It’s been a rollercoaster, but 2019 is done. ✅

A Little Lost

This time of year is one where people often complain that they don’t know what day it is. This is mostly due to the festive period being a time where a lot of people are off work. It’s perfectly normal.

There is also this feeling of feeling in between two different emotions. Christmas is a time to show thanks, be grateful for what you have. And New Year is about looking forward to the future, step away from where you currently may be. Or that is how it has felt for me.

The festive period has been really difficult this year, due to a family loss. It has left me between being thankful for what I have, and wanting to move on. I am glad that there is people around, friends and family. But I also am afraid that stepping forward will lessen the memories I have. Honestly, I think every person feels like this with a loss, but Christmas just seems to exaggerate these feelings.

So, I feel like I am sitting in limbo. Time forces me forward, despite my wishes. It doesn’t matter whether I am ready, things move on. Doesn’t make things any easier though.

Hello 2019.

The start of a new year, already? It’s pretty scary how time just seems to fly by, and there is nothing you can do to stop it. It’s important to make the best of whatever time you have, and that includes relaxing.

This year, I have a few things I want to sort out.

1) Finances- I pretty much live payday to payday, which is pretty sad. It’s no way to live life, as you can feel permanently broke. So I am planning on setting up my bill payment account, and I won’t be able to touch the money that goes into there. It’s going to need a bit of discipline, but I am aiming to spend a lot wiser next year, and hopefully save some money.

2) Be Healthier- I am very unhealthy. I do a lot of walking, but I eat so much crap. This year is about progress, so I want try and move a little forward with my health. It includes eating better, and doing more exercise, as well as looking after my mental health. My mental health was awful last year, and it was like a brick wall that stopped me from doing so much. I want my health to stop being such a burden on my own life. So more ‘body positive’ and self-care in the year ahead.

3) Read More- this sounds a pretty weak one, but it’s important. I have always read, but last year I really struggled. Reading is something I need to have focus for, and I haven’t had the focus. So I am going to try and put time aside to relax and read to unwind.

It’s not a lot. But they are things I would like to achieve. The start of a new year always feels like a fresh start, but it’s not really. It does feel like a good opportunity to push myself to be better, but every day should be like that. But, it psychologically feels to close off a year, especially if it feels like a bad one.

Let’s see what 2019 has in store.

One Word Answer

Happy New Year. I hope every reader has a good start to 2017. Although, it really doesn’t feel like we should be on a new year already. Time, as they say, does certainly fly.


The start of a new year is a perfect opportunity to start afresh. To set some goals, in the hope to gain something out of the next 12 months ahead. It is a natural point where we can try to plan for the future. Almost like a fresh start. But, in reality there is more than just one fresh start a year, and by thinking that there is, so many people are doomed to fail in whatever dreams they have for the year before it even starts. But there are so many opportunities to start new things, to have a fresh start, throughout the year. Every day is a chance to make that day better than yesterday. Close the door on what happened yesterday, as there is nothing you can do for what has already happened, and focus on today.

I always do better if I make general goals for what I want in the year. As I have said previously, my aim for 2016 was to make it better than 2015, and it was. By quite a lot. And I think that was because I lived my life more day-by-day, and it made it a lot easier to focus on the positive stuff. As the bad stuff used to just ‘overhang’ over me. It took a long time, but it has made me feel better.

So this year, in 2017, I thought about what I want to achieve for the year. And most of it is things like to read more or fill a sketch book for the year. Which, considering I have struggled with productivity over the last few years. So, that influenced my overall goal for the year. Just one word. COMMIT. Anything I am going to do, I have to put all my energy into it, and keep going. However, if there is anything that I cannot fully commit to, then I leave it. I am not getting any younger. No point in wasting time on things that I can’t even spend attention on.

It is all baby steps, so I don’t expect everything straight away. But, if I can start focusing on things, I might just make progress. And that is all anyone should ever want for a new year. Progress.

So Long 2016

Everywhere I look, there are people condemning this past year . Blaming the high number of celebrity deaths, terrorist attacks and political changes on 2016. Which is crazy. Yes, bad stuff has happened, but bad things always happen. The 24 hour news coverage has been very good at showing us bulletins with no ‘good news’ story.

Well, I am going against the common ‘2016 is shit’ thoughts, and think that this year has been one of the best year I have had in a very long time. Which fits in with my main aim for the year, to make 2016 better than 2015. 

The big thing was my mental health. I took a step back from a lot of things, like relationships, trying to work on illustrating things and oversharing online. I spent time think about my anxiety and what happened when I had panic attacks. I started the process in 2015, but I feel like I came a long way in 2016. I still have panic attacks and things,  but there is a lesser chance of them ruining my day or week. Although I have still got a lot of work to do on my mental health, I feel like a huge weight has been lifted already. 

This has given me more confidence. For the first time since I started at my work, I put myself forward for being an instructor, which is showing people how to do the job. I gave tours of the warehouse I work to large groups of new starts. I joined a group of associates which tries to make things better for everyone at my work. It feels like I can make a difference and help people. It feels good doing things I would never have done before. I feel like, for once in my life, I actually have a place somewhere that fits. 

I also decided at the start of the year that I would try to learn to drive again. I had driving lessons when I was younger, but the lessons went on for too long and I lost my confidence. So I started my lessons again, and it went a lot better. In the summer I passed my theory test, and in November I passed my practical. Driving felt like something that was sitting in the background, just another thing I didn’t finish. But now, it’s done. I passed, I just need to get a car now. 

So yes, 2016 has been a successful year for me. It has still had it’s bad points, don’t get me wrong, but I am not giving that my time. I am focusing on the ‘good stuff’. And it really helps. I can’t remember the last time where I sat at New Year, and felt happy about the previous 12 months. It’s a long overdue change. 

New Year, New Me? 

Maybe not. 

Not that there is anything wrong with trying to better yourself. I think that every new day is another opportunity the better yourself and make the day better than yesterday. It is good that people use the start of a new year, as a perfect way too try and set any plans in motion. And it is easy to see why so many people do it. 

Personally, I know that I have a high failure rate when I have made New Year’s resolutions previously. I will maybe do okay for a few days or, if lucky, a few weeks. But, then, I lose focus, slip up, lose all momentum, and then quit. It’s not because of the task itself, I think it’s because of the build up and putting myself under so much pressure to succeed. Add into the mix that I have quite a bad fear of failure, there is only one way things tend to go. 

So, I am trying to take one day at a time, rather than generalising the whole year. It makes things a bit easier for me to deal with, as the periods of time I try to make better, are a lot smaller. And, if I do slip up, it’s only one day. There is a new one tomorrow, and that one will be better. At least I hope that is the case. I have been trying to eat a bit healthier, and that is something that I find easier taking one day at a time. Mostly, because I try to plan a week in advance and I just go eat some crisps instead. 

I love the metaphor that the start of a new year is a start of a new book, I like to think that every day is a different page of that book. That helps me visualise where I am on a certain day, and the idea is of turning the page away from a bad day is soothing to me. I don’t know why. It does help my anxiety levels, as I feel more in control.

As long as people are trying to better themselves, any attempts should be applauded. Whatever the success rate. 

Happy Hogmanay 

It’s the last day of 2015, and it’s time to be thankful for the year that’s past. Sometime’s it can be hard to find the positives, as it feels we are hard wired to only focus on the negative stuff. 

The celebrations are big here in Scotland. Every major city has it’s own celebrations. From the Edinburgh Street Party to Stonehaven’s Fireball Ceremony, and lots of fireworks. Thousands of people will celebrate it public parties, but celebrating in home is also part of the Hogmanay fun. As soon as the bells toll at midnight, people start knocking on the doors of their neighbours, to wish well for the year ahead. This is called first-footing, as in the first foot through the door. If the first person through your door is tall and dark, it’s seen as good luck. 

One of the most famous part of the Hogmanay celebrations is the singing of Auld Lang Syne written by Rabbie Burns. It’s become popular all over the world when celebrating the new year. So, to help you prepare for the singing of the song, I have put the lyrics below.

Thank you if you have read any of my posts this year, I really appreciate it. And I also wish you all a braw Hogmanay and a bonnie start to 2016. Cheers.