By Siobhan O’Neill White
If we thought 2020 was tough, in many ways, 2021 was even harder. We’ve all been on a rollercoaster of emotion; worrying about catching Covid, for many people trying to get through Covid and on top of that, the stress of multiple lockdowns. It has been an extraordinarily difficult time so this January, go easy on yourself. Many of us, me included, have put on a few extra pounds since Covid barged into our lives and caused all sorts of disruption. With the levels of worry and fear we have experienced, putting on a few lbs is really not that big a deal in the grand scheme of things. As January rolls around, lots of us may start thinking about getting fitter and losing weight but this year, we are suggesting that you be kind to yourself. If you want to cut back on the sweet treats a little, that’s ok. If you want to do add extra exercise into your life, go right ahead. But please remember, that we are all going through an incredibly tough time and we need to mind ourselves. Our mental health is as important as our physical health and it’s important to make the time to do nice things for yourself. Whether that’s going for a long walk, relaxing for half an hour with a coffee and magazine or taking a relaxing bubble bath – do what helps you relax and unwind.And as we are staying at home more than usual, make time for nice activities, like baking with the kids or cooking a nice dinner. Maybe have a pajama day with movies and hot chocolate or bring our some board games for a bit of fun family time.Whatever you get up to this January, remember, be kind to yourself and your loved ones. We’ve got to pull together and support each other as much as possible to get through these strange, unsettling times. For indoor and outdoor activity ideas and lots of recipes, check out mams.ie parenting website.