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New Year, New You!!

A new year....a new you! that's how the saying goes, although there's probably nothing wrong with the old you!

At this time of the year some people like to reflect on the year gone by. Some things may have gone well others may not. You may have put on weight, drunk a bit too much, missed out on a promotion or split up from a partner. Although it is natural to think about what went wrong, try not to dwell but also consider what went well, focus on the positives and consider what changes you can make in the future. Whether that be taking up a new hobby, working on your personal development or re-training for a new job for example.


If you simply want to be a bit more organised in 2024 you may find some of the tips below useful.

Unwanted presents, you know the scenario, you've been given a gift that you either already have, doesn't fit, you're allergic to or you simply don't like. Now depending on your relationship with the gift giver this may be easily solved and you can just hand it back. In most cases however you probably want to spare their feelings. They have may gone to a lot of trouble to choose you a gift. This link offers some suggestions about what you can do. A word of warning though if you choose to re-gift an item do remember where it came from as handing it directly back to the person who gave you it might not go down well.

Declutter which camp do you fall in to? You take down the decorations and it feels clean and spacious or you take down the decorations and it feels gloomy and bare? Whichever way you look at it this could also be a great time to declutter. New toys, clothes and appliances may have replaced old ones. As with unwanted gifts you have a few options, sell, donate, give away, re-purpose or throw away. If you are giving to a charity shop, please make sure the items are in a decent, clean, saleable condition. For clothing that is worn out or for underwear or branded workwear please use a textile recycle bin

You can declutter your devices too. Back up your photos onto a cloud or a hard drive then you can remove them from your device. If you like hard copies of your memories you can use an app such as Freeprints or Photobox where you just pay for the postage.


Holidays and Annual Leave

Do you remember our blog "Surviving the summer" where we said that you should book your leave early for the major holidays if you need to cover childcare? well maybe now is a good time to update your calendar with all the school term dates and get those requests in for the Easter, Summer and Christmas breaks, or start those conversations now with friends and family. Seriously it will be February half term before you know it!.


Insurance renewals You could also go through and make a note of when renewals of home, travel, pet insurance etc are due then a few weeks beforehand you can can go online and do a price comparison. It always pays to shop around. It might be a good idea to note when your vehicle MOT and Tax are due you can also set a text reminder for your MOT on Gov.UK

When renewing car insurance Martin Lewis the Money Savings expert recommends that you get your quote between 20 and 26 days before your insurance is due. Car insurance has gone up drastically recently follow this link to find some really good advice about keeping your premiums as low as possible.

Are you paying for subscriptions you no longer use? Magazines, gym membership, streaming services?Go through your Direct debits and Standing Orders and cancel any you no longer use or alternatively, use them!


Dry January - Veganuary - Some people like to do one of these, some don't. If you are considering making improvements to your lifestyle then starting the year with a detox may work for you but equally it may feel a bit much and you could just end up binging on the 1st February.

If you are looking to make healthy changes to your lifestyle start small with manageable goals. Rather than cutting out "bad" foods and drinks think about adding in more of the healthy options, lean meats, fruits and vegetables, seed and pulses and aim to drink more water. Go for a 5 or 10 minute walk each day, aim for 7-9 hours sleep a night. Slowly you will start to feel the benefits.

And by the way you don't have to wait for January 1st to start making changes, you can start anytime, how about right now?


Getting Fit! It's at the top of so many people's "resolutions" "this year I'm going to get fitter!" but what does that mean? Do you have ambitions to run a marathon , climb a mountain or bench press your own body weight? Woah there!! these challenges require a certain level of fitness and while they may be achievable for some, if you struggle to go upstairs without getting out of breath you will need to set your goals to something more manageable. I'm not saying you can never achieve them just that you need to start at the beginning.

Firstly think about what you actually want to achieve and why, for example to fit in to a certain outfit by a certain date or to run around after your new grand child

Secondly to stay motivated, set short term goals that are realistic, this will spur you on to achieve the next goal and don't forget to celebrate every achievement.

A couple of suggestions to get you started: You could try out the C25Kapp (couch to 5km) or head over to your local parkrun this is a wonderfully inclusive way of starting your fitness journey, you don't even have to run and you can end up making new friends.

However if you hate running this isn't going to work for you! Find something you enjoy, swimming, ice skating, ballroom dancing, badminton? really anything that gets you moving. The best exercise to get fit is the one you like!

Getting fit is not just about exercise, pay attention to your diet , sleep and water intake. Quit smoking and cut down on alcohol. Get advice from a medical professional if you have any concerns, you may even be able to have gym membership on prescription!


Take care of your mental wellbeing


We are often told that more and more people are suffering from poor mental health these days.  Here at People at Work we talk to many people who are struggling to remain resilient with the pressures that modern life puts upon them.  Relationships, financial worries, bereavement, distant families or just plain juggling work and home life. 


In 2024 be mindful of your mental wellbeing.  Talk to us at People at Work 020 3286 1545 about self-care  strategies that can help, useful free support including helplines and individual counselling.  Our experience is that early recognition of pressures and work on our self-care can really help. 


Have a look at these early steps you can take.  Steps to Wellbeing

Choose a couple of these Stress Busters


Next Christmas I know! why am I already talking about next Christmas? you are still recovering from the last one! but if you found Christmas a stretch last year it might be a good idea to start planning financially for the next one. Head over to money helper for some guidance.

You might also be able to pick up christmas crackers, decorations, cards etc in the sale and put them away for next year it can save up to 50% on these items and you'll have less to think about next December. Equally though if money is really tight you should consider if these items are even necessary.


If your organisation subscribes to our service Talk to a People at Work first responder and find out how we can be part of your wellbeing support. 020 3286 1545

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