Simplicity and Fun in 2021
In December, as I rounded off my project, ‘A Year of Humble Intent,’ I set an intention to go easy on myself and in ways, I have. I didn’t exert pressure to post on this blog in gloomy January and I have generally been practicing the cutting of my own slack. However, it can be a thin line to tow between going easy on oneself and daily self-indulgence! In a short course I took on the Ten Percent Happier app, Kelly McGonigal explained that self-compassion ‘isn’t about letting yourself off the hook.’
2021’s theme is ‘Simplicity and Fun in 2021.’ (2020’s was ‘A Year of Humble Intent’).
February’s intention and new habit is not to buy any clothes. This has been percolating for some time and I experimented with it successfully in 2019 (albeit in private and not on a blog!). I remember asking my mother when I was teenager if she had any clothes from the 60s or 70s that I could co-opt. She laughed and said, ‘in those days we wore out our clothes.’ Every few years, I fill giant black refuse bags and donate them to charity or give them to friends. There’s a consolation in knowing they won’t be thrown out but I am ready to embrace the satisfaction of wearing out the clothes I own. My focus is more on the act of appreciating the clothes I possess rather than on the denial of possessing more.
Fashion is of great cultural and personal significance, in my view, and just as good lipstick and blusher can change a person’s mood, so too can a new pair of jeans or a dress. There is nothing wrong with buying new clothes. However, I wish to take a break from buying clothes with the overall aim of living with less. I learned a lot about living with less last year when I had to downsize in order to fit my possessions into one room. I seem to be slowly releasing crutches to see if I can stand without them.
We are still under level 5 restrictions/’in lockdown’ in Ireland. My familiar old bedfellow, insomnia, has come back to play. I intend to write about insomnia again soon and share my nascent strategies for coping with it sans medication (for once and for all) in 2021.
Working from home has shifted my perspective. I am grateful to be in the workforce and I am learning to embrace stillness. I am realising that I am much more introverted than I thought: an ambivert, maybe! On the more difficult days, however; I find solace in the growing light:
‘Light is the mother of life. The sun brings light and colour. It causes grasses, crops, leaves and flowers to grow. The sun brings forth the erotic charge of the curved earth; it awakens her wild sensuousness.’John O’Donohue, Anam Chara, P.82