Well, here we go. I’ve really struggled with writing this post. 2021 was
probably definitely one of the worst years of my life. So, why am I bothering to look back on it? Well, because I think it’s important to look back at who we were a year ago and see how far we’ve come. As bad as this year has been, I am taking away some positives. It has shown me just how strong I am, how important my family is and who I can rely on.
I’m also taking the opportunity to look forward to 2022 and what I hope to achieve.
So, let’s get into it.
My family lost two very important people this year – My dad and my auntie.
I once read somewhere that to really accept that someone is gone, you have to go a year and a day without them. It’s only once you have experienced every holiday, anniversary, birthday without them there by your side that you can truly accept your loss. At the moment, this feels a very long way off. However, we have survived our first Christmas and New Year without the largest and loudest member of our family (my dad) and the oldest and quietest member (my auntie).
Some days, it is easy to remember them both and smile fondly at happy memories. Some days, the grief grips my heart and squeezes it and punches me in the stomach. Those are the days that the tears fall, and it feels like day one all over again. I don’t curse those days, however. A good friend once told me that grief is just love with nowhere to go. When I cry, each tear is a little ‘I love you’ to my dad and auntie.
I want to give a special shout out to my mum here. My auntie was disabled, and my mum became her carer after my nan died in 1999. In the space of 5 weeks in 2021, my mum lost both her husband and her sister. However, she has coped so incredibly well, and I am beyond proud of her.
As you can imagine, my mental health has been a bit all over the place this year. That said, overall, it has been one of the better mental health years that I’ve had strangely. There was a bit of a blip in October or November, and I did have to up my sertraline dose because I just didn’t feel like I had the energy to get myself through it this time. I have no shame whatsoever in the fact that I take medication for my mental health. I remember a time when I wanted to come off it completely, but I’ve made peace with it now. Why wouldn’t I take something that helps me? Why waste time and energy on just trying to get through the day when a tablet can do it for you, and you can focus on the important things?
Anyway, to improve my mental health in 2021, I gave up alcohol, cut down my caffeine consumption, had earlier nights, and explored my spiritual side. It seems to be helping, so I’ll be taking this into 2022.
I know it’s a bit big-headed but I am incredibly proud of myself for handling 2021. I could have completely lost my head but instead, I powered my way through.
I always seem to be saying this, but my blogging journey has been very up and down! When my dad passed away I stopped blogging and promoting completely for a few months. I’ve found it quite difficult to get the motivation back. However, it is because of my dad that I actually decided to become self-employed with my blog. My dad always loved his jobs. I decided that I wanted a job that I loved too. I’d taken a few years off to raise my son, but it was time to start looking for a job so I decided to give blogging a go!
I did have my best views in 2021 though. I wanted to reach 10,000 and I managed it! Here’s a breakdown of my views since I started in June 2019:
2019 – 1,888 views
2020 – 9,442 views
2021 – 13,979 views
I am so proud. My progress has been slow and steady and I’m okay with that.
This is what I want for 2022.
Improving My Health
I want to improve my overall health in 2022. Mental and physical. I’m not going to put a number on anything, such as losing x stones or anything. I will base it on how I feel.
As soon as I saw this, I fell in love with it. I ALWAYS save the nice candles. I never like using up my nice notebooks and get annoyed if my writing isn’t neat enough. I save my nice toiletries because I don’t want to waste them. Not this year! I’m going to use all of my nice stuff. Who’s with me?
I spoke in a previous post about how I would like to increase my savings and pay some of my debt off and I’m serious. I’ll be continuing with Matched Betting, I’m still completing surveys to earn vouchers and cash and I’ve signed up to some free lottery-type things. I know it’s obviously not a guaranteed win, but you’ve got to be in it to win it right? And I’m not spending any money so win-win. Finally, I signed up to some sites that offer you a free share anywhere between £3 – £200 when you deposit £1 so fingers crossed on that! Let me know if you would like the details!
I’m also being more conscious of what I spend my money on. I’m already very careful but I know that I could probably do better with the food shop.
The other way I’m hoping to earn a little more cash is through car boot sales. I should have enough stuff to sell as I’m going to start #thebig2022declutter
It’s not a real thing that hashtag, I just made it up.
The Big 2022 Declutter
I made a good start in 2021 (eventually) on decluttering. But this year, THIS YEAR will be the year that I really go for it. Clothes I’ve not worn in years, GONE. Little J’s old toys, GONE. All (most) of little J’s baby clothes that are stored in the loft, GONE.
Oh God, the loft.
I’m surprised we managed to get the Christmas decorations back up there. Our loft is PACKED. I’m not looking forward to that job.
I’m giving myself plenty of time to do all of the jobs though. I’m thinking that I’ll allow a month per room. That means that I can give myself a week per area. January will be the bedroom. I can break this down further by doing the wardrobe one week, under the bed next, then the chest of draws and the final week will be miscellaneous.
Every single draw, unit, nook and cranny will be decluttered and cleaned.
If anyone wants to join me and declutter your own house at the same time, let me know! We can create a group and keep each other motivated!
The best advice that I was given (by my good friend again – she’s a gem!) is to have a plan ready for all the decluttered stuff. Have a tip slot booked, a car boot sale organised or a trip to the charity shop arranged. That way, you won’t have clutter, cluttering up your house again!
Okay, so I’m not off to the best start with this as it 16:48 on Sunday – the day it’s due to go live. Oops! But, I will start getting organised with birthdays, and getting to places on time. I will rename myself The Unprocrastinating Mum!