However you view January, either as a brand new fresh start, or just another winter month you can’t wait to end, this one is bound to be completely different for all of us. Lockdown 3 brings so much of what we experienced back in March last year right back round again, but let’s try remain slightly positive that with two vaccines currently being rolled out in the UK the end can’t be too far away. I’m seeing a lot of people viewing January as a month to hibernate – how many of us have previously wished for that on a freezing cold dark morning in past years? It’s different when you don’t have a choice, but despite being in lockdown there are still plenty of things to do in January.
Despite being hopeful of many things this year including nights out with my friends, eating in restaurants and travel abroad (I’ve already got two trips booked for later in the year) I do think 2021 will be the year of the mini adventure. A continuation of appreciating the small things, discovering places on our doorstep or across the UK, and simply enjoying family time and fun days with those close to us.
When you’ve spent so many months restricted, even the small things become mini adventures when you can do them again, and let’s face it we are going to have a very slow and staggered release from lockdown rather than a free for all. So although I’m dreaming of big plans eventually, I think it will pay to have small ones throughout the year to fall back on too.
Last year by chance we booked a UK holiday early in the year, without knowing how glad we would be of it when all the prices shot up as the year went on. So far this week alone I must have said ‘there’s no harm in planning’ at least five or six times, so amongst all the little indoor things to do in January on this list, expect some planning for the future too.
Here’s 40 things to do in January.
Update your new diary or planner with all the birthdays, key dates and any plans you currently have in. So many people stopped using their planner last year but I have no idea why. Even if you don’t have things to do use it to keep track of anything else – food, spending, a goal, fitness etc.
Clear out your emails. For the psychopaths that have thousands of unread emails delete them all. Also look at what you’re subscribed to and unsubscribe to any that you don’t open anymore, or that you don’t need.
Create a savings plan. Boring but we all have something we are aiming for and starting the year with a clear savings plan will set you off on the right track.
Try bullet journaling. Even if you don’t keep the actual bullet journal up beyond a month you are still likely to take something away from giving it a go. Read my post on bullet journaling here.
One that always divides opinions but set yourself some resolutions or goals – however big or small. I don’t really do resolutions but I do set myself some goals, and they can be anything at all.
Create a vision board for yourself for the year.
Back up your photos from 2020, or beyond if you’re one of those people that never do. Don’t be the person that gets caught out and loses all those memories. It took me hours but so worth it.
Have a clear out, but don’t be one of those annoying people who announce it first, or post afterwards and say ‘congratulations you all made the cut!’. Just unfollow anyone or anything that doesn’t leave you feeling positive.
Follow new people, there are a lot of shares happening particularly on instagram of inspiring accounts in all genres.
If you use social media for business, do an audit of your accounts from the past year which will really help give you a plan for this year.
Take your social media memories offline and make a 2020 photo book. I cant remember which post I suggested it but looking back through your camera roll of the past year will definitely give some good memories, even if they aren’t as extravagant as they could have been. Pull out the good memories and either print and frame them or create a photo book.
Start a blog. It takes time and effort so January is a great time to do it. Blogging has changed dramatically the last year but here’s some reasons why you should start a blog in 2021 (previously sponsored post).
Have a wardrobe clear out, especially if you got new clothes from Christmas. What will you never wear again? Get rid.
Put all the Christmas decorations away – there are still people around where I live with them up. Each to their own and their may be a reason for it but a good post Christmas tidy and clean does wonders for your living environment.
Do an early spring clean. If we are going to be allowed out in spring I won’t be spending it indoors cleaning!
Try a new home made recipe at least once a week. Delicious Magazine has a great article on seasonal recipes using produce available at this time of year.
Decorate with new flowers, candles, throws and decor. H&M Home have a gorgeous new range out it’s worth looking at.
Make a DIY bird feeder – here’s how.
Have a look at the online January sales, there’s some good bargains I’ll be sharing my favourites soon.
Support your local businesses more than ever. After the Christmas rush they’re likely to have a lot less custom and will appreciate any support whether that’s buying products, gift vouchers or sharing their content on social media. Discovering new ones is also a good way to pass half an hour.
Invest in some new loungewear, more new loungewear. We aren’t coming out of it for at least 3 months so might as well be comfy.
Read my blog on hygge and put it into practice. Might sound like a shameless plug but you’ll see why I’ve suggested it if you read that post. It’s all about finding contentment.
Have an at home pamper day, a bath, a winter manicure – whatever you fancy.
A typical January resolution but get fit and healthy, or make small changes to improve your wellbeing in this way.
Send flowers to someone who could do with a pick me up.
On Blue Monday (18th January) make sure you have a good day. Eat your favourite foods, watch your favourite film, contact all those close to and make a conscious effort to avoid any negativity.
Go for yet another bloody walk. I won’t even try to jazz this up as it will have to be more of the same in line with the current rules but just getting outside does make you feel better.
If it snows get out in it – make snow angels, take photos, take a sledge on your walk, have a snowball fight.
Do a virtual half or full marathon. A quick google search brings up a lot of organisations running these, and there are some that don’t require specific distances such as Great Run here.
Watch the new Attenborough series every Sunday night
Have a Netflix day (or a few…) – I shared some of my favourite Netflix shows here just before Christmas, but some new ones since then include Bridgerton (OBVIOUSLY), Tiny Pretty Things, 2020 is Dead, The Ripper Documentary. I also saw today that the BBC’s Dracula is on there now and I really enjoyed that last year.
Create a playlist, or download old Glastonbury’s and have a music night. On New Year’s Eve Kieran and I played vinyls all night with a few bottles of wine. It was a lot of fun would highly recommend.
Read, even if you don’t usually. I used to read all the time but haven’t for so long. I did however buy The Duke & I (affiliate link) after watching Bridgerton as it’s based on the novels by Julia Quinn.
Play board games or quizzes if you aren’t fed up of them yet.
I hate that I have to include this again but plan zoom calls with your friends or family. We are sociable creatures and annoyingly this is all we can really do this month.
It’s National Popcorn day on 19th January so get some in and have a film day.
National Days can be a bit silly, but some are actually really good or based on more than sharing things on social media. Here’s a full calendar of them and lo and behold guess what’s on there? National Banana Bread Day – how simply perfect for a January lockdown. Have a look through, I’m sure you will find one that takes your fancy to go all out with. The food ones are especially good.
2021 Mini Adventures
If you feel comfortable then of course you could plan bigger adventures through real holidays, one of my favourite things to do in January. I have two sets of flights booked for this year and I’m praying we will be able to go, but I’ve not yet booked a big summer holiday as I’m holding out a while longer for that. As I said at the start though there is no harm in planning, so when the time comes you have done all the research.
If proper holiday planning isn’t for you then all of these mini adventures can be planned. They’re all easy to do, and by planning them out it definitely gives a bit of a sense of something good to come this year.
Plan to become a tourist in your own local area. I don’t mean go on yet more walks, I mean pick a lovely hotel within an hour from your home and book a night away. Booking.com often offer free cancellation, but if you dont want to commit to dates yet just do the research and make a shortlist so you’re prepared when restrictions ease. I’ve got mine ready!
I’ve seen this concept about quite a bit, but give yourself challenges through the year. A travel example from the past is the ‘take 12 trips challenge’, where you aim to take a trip a month through the year. That’s unachievable this year with lockdown, but some others that are more mini adventures include:
The elements – do an activity in all weathers, wind, rain, sun or snow. Your activity could be anything at all – cook, sleep outside, take a photo, hike, camp etc
Landscapes – do an activity on the beach, in the mountains, in the sea, in a lake, in a forest.
The seasons – spring, summer, autumn and winter. What one thing do you want to do in each season?
Plan to try a new sport, for example a surf lesson, a golf tuition, a wild swim.
If you blog do a blog post a day for a whole month. As you know I did Blogmas and it was hard work but I had the time to do it and it really benefited my blog and gave structure to my day as I had a focus.
Take part in one of those photo challenges that are all over Pinterest where you have to take a photo a day for the whole month.
Become a member of the National Trust or English Heritage and make a list of all the places you will visit through the year.
I’m not sure if I’ve explained this whole mini adventures thing very well, but it’s basically like setting yourself little challenges to stick to and using January to plan them out until we can do them. Look at it as an optimistic way of taking what we can get in 2021, and hopefully it won’t be long before those mini adventures turn to big adventures as the year progresses.
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