04.10.2020 | Resolutions and Gardens and Books

October. How can it be October already? Don’t answer that. I know time messes with me so much in this pandemic. I’ve been using the start of a new months to try to incorporate some (tiny) changes for my own mental well-being. Stay tuned how that goes.

#1 I try to get a decent amount of sleep. Which means going to bed early-ish. At a reasonable time anyway. I’m a sloth in the mornings, so I need to get up around 5:30 when I want to leave the house around 7. Which means I should be in bed at 11 at the latest. Preferably even earlier. Didn’t work all that well on Thursday / Friday, but at least it wasn’t after midnight. Small steps, right?

#2 I try to limit the time I spend on my phone / social media. I still use it to read the newspaper and such. But I’m using two apps to limit my screen time and that seems to be working ok for now. I’ve been using them for a long time to be honest and I have been getting better with limiting mindless scrolling. Yes, I could just delete Twitter and Instagram from my phone, but I’m not ready to take that step yet. Ages ago I’ve curated a few topical lists and that’s basically all I’m checking most of the time. I do the occasional scroll through my general feed (still more often than I’d like), but basically I limit it to the lists. A few days ago I finally did something similar with Instagram, where I had started to follow so many news and politics and other general interest accounts that getting through my list to see everything or at least not miss stuff from people I know or my favourite celebs and such, started to get overwhelming. So I opened a new private account and follow all those politics / general accounts over there and keep my first Insta for the people I know and personally care about, for touristy accounts of places I love, accounts about self-care and such. And it’s been such a a relief! I admit I hardly ever check the 2nd account and as much as I sometimes feel I miss out on news and politics and interesting science stuff. I don’t really care all that much. There is only so much a brain can actually compute and I try to keep the input coming in from social media… I don’t know, real and relevant to my life, maybe? I’m definitely spending a lot less time on Instagram these days and that’s a good thing.

Today a friend and I visited the state garden show and had a lovely visit. It was a bit rainy and windy at the start, but turned quite nice in the afternoon. The garden show this year was located at a former coal mining site AND also at a former monastery site. Sounds weird, but that’s just the variety of landscape and history in our region.

Garden at Kamp Monastery
Garden at Kamp Monastery

In the attempt to use my time more wisely and not dawdle so much I’ve created a new habit tracker for my not-quite-bullet-journal. And put among other things reading in three different categories on it. One is the digital newspaper I pay for and haven’t really read regularly these past few months. The 2nd category is ‘self care’ and I have tons of books I want to get through, but often always get distracted from. Maybe the tracker will help. The 3rd category is ‘fiction’ even though I read more than enough in that regard. Often enough procrastinating over other things by picking up a book. At the moment I’m even reading two novels at the same time, which I hardly ever do, but somehow neither of them has got my fully hooked yet, so I’m switching between them. One is the first “Enola Holmes” book I bought after I love the movie. Maybe it’s the fact that I know the plot from the movie, which makes this a bit boring. The 2nd one ins “Mr. Malcolm’s List”, a regency romance, which I usually love. But in this case I don’t really like either of the characters much yet, which makes reading a bit tiresome. I only picked it because one of my favourite actors – Sam Heughan – will be playing one of the roles when they turn this into a movie this year or next year. So I’ll be plodding on with both books I guess. Can’t wait to start one that has me hooked from the start though.

One last good news: I booked another vacation by the sea. Early January before everything gets back to normal at the office after the Christmas holidays. I would have loved to take time off earlier, but I’m afraid there will be so much to do at the end of the year, that taking time off might be impossible or at least severely frowned upon. But no one will miss me in early January. I’ll be by the Baltic Sea this time, once again in an apartment of the same resort chain I had used for the trip to the sea in the Netherlands a few weeks ago. I know winter at the sea might sound drab, but I know it won’t be. Being by the sea is never drab and I’m very much looking forward to it. Maybe I should start a countdown tracker. Three calendar months from today 🙂  

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