Over a game of jenga on Christmas day, I got to thinking about life. Sometimes we stand tall and strong and it feels like nothing can shake us. Then as time goes on, little pieces of you can be taken. Sometimes it gets pretty wobbly but just when you think you might come crashing down, you hold it all together. You remember that you are stronger than you think. And when it does all get a bit much and you fall to pieces, you realise that it’s ok. Because at least you gave it a damn good try. And you remember that it’s fine to rebuild yourself. It’s actually pretty good fun
Happy 2023. I hope you had a really wonderful festive break. I love Christmas. I love the chilled time with family and friends, the lights, the food, the traditions, the music, the films. I love picking out and wrapping up gifts. I just love it all. I much prefer Christmas to hogmanay but I enjoy the sense of hope and excitment as a New Year approaches.
My Dad shared a lovely quote on Christmas Day.
‘If music be the food of love, play on’. (Shakespeare).
I think we should all take that into 2023. PLAY ON, SING ON and no matter what comes our way – just carry on, as best as you can.
We were too busy eating outstanding food on Christmas, but on boxing day (leftovers were still epic) I checked out the King’s speech. I loved the way he spoke about faith, light and the importance of focusing on the good in this life, remembering the power of prayer and surrendering. Having a regular spiritual practice can be amazing in terms of raising our energy and giving us a real sense of hope. It can be all too easy to neglect the routines that we hold most dear. Sometimes it can be overwhelming trying to prioritise and fit in what many now call a daily wellness plan. I want to remind you that there is no point feeling guilty, trying to be the best ‘new you’. Why not instead we make this month about learning to love and respect ourselves more than we ever have? When we do so, we are far more likely to show ourselves the self compassion we deserve.
I decided to write a list of some small habits that help to raise my energy and mood.
Here are some things on the list:
Prayer, meditation and affirmations
Time by the sea
Listening to music
Twerking and dancing
Running or walking outside
Sauna and Steam Room
Cold water therapy and breathwork
Connecting with family/friends
Tidying and sorting the house (with music, a podcast or audiobook)
Getting lost in a film or series
Staring at the stars or a sunset
The list could go on.
Instead of putting pressure on myself to do it all, I just fit in what I can. Some days we need to work longer hours or prioritise family and it can feel like there is no time to tick things off the list. Sometimes it feels like there is no time for ourselves. But if we can even reorder our lists a little in terms of priorities, including a couple of routines that will contribute to our wellness. Perhaps do a little journalling around this and rank which routines are most in line with your values. It’s also very important that we show ourselves compassion for doing our best with each day. Guilt is such a wasted energy that can sap the life out of us. Don’t focus on the shame of what you didn’t get around to. Instead, focus on the gratitude for what you achieved each day. It can be the small things such as smiling at someone on the street, posting that thank you card or taking time to walk round the block for some fresh air. Be kind to yourself!
Oh and back to games, solitaire or as I like to call ‘Solitude’ is a lovely way to stop and be mindful. I love these little quiet moments like this. I don’t have an analogy for the game like I do for jenga but my best score is 4 so I will be chilling out and trying to get it down to a 2 or 3. Wish me luck.
I would love to hear some of the routines on your list. Please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or across social @jojofrasermojo
You got this!
Jojo Fraser is an award-winning mental health researcher, author, podcaster and keynote speaker, dubbed as ‘the Queen of positivity and a kindness advocate. She was a Scottish Influencer Award Finalist in 2022. Jojo is a Tedx speaker and a regular contributor on BBC radio. She is fondly known for normalising discussions around our mental and spiritual health, making it accessible and relatable to all. She has quickly grown a reputation for having a huge impact even on the most sceptical of people.
Connect with her across social @jojofrasermojo
Instagram (the old account was hacked)
Listen to her Tedx talk about the power of removing our masks.
Contact – email@example.com