Trying something new every day – beating the lockdown blues. Day 7

I am attempting to do something new every day in a challenge to motivate myself through lockdown 3.0. It’s a big ask during a normal month, let alone one where your movements are restricted to within 5km of your house.

In the last three days, here are my snazzy accomplishments:

Today I cooked chilli con carne which is not only the first time I prepared that dish but also my Mexican culinary premier! Woohoo. As my kids are quite young, I had to err on the side of bland and therefore it lacked a “kick”, as my husband so diplomatically put it (on his third helping /“testing”). However, the kids ate it so it’s a winner as far as I’m concerned.

Yesterday I gave myself the day off, which is now part of my new rules. It felt like I was cheating.

And on Friday I did something which technically was new, but did feel a bit like a cop out. I brainwashed myself.

Here’s a bit of background.

I am an awful homeschool teacher. I have found that if I am useless at something, I usually start to dislike it or vice versa, not sure. The upshot is that I now rather despise homeschooling.

But it’s been bothering me as my kids will, and no doubt have, picked up on it. They’re too young to decipher the difference between mom not liking homeschooling and god forbid, mom not liking spending time with them. What usually happens is I get a bit crabby, and when Mom is snappy, the house is unhappy. Obviously if I was chirpier during this process, everyone else could be too – and true sincere chirpiness, not shrill crazy fake chirpiness which is worse than being snappy.

On Friday morning I was at the car test centre getting it the official governmental annual ok from The Yellow Vested Ones, and I had a wee stew on this problem of mine. I realised that just before I lose my shit, one thought usually bounces across my mind – I swear internally with an emphatic “for christsake/for f*cksake/Sweet Jesus/Is he taking the piss out of me?”. Knowing this sequence of events gave me an idea..

That afternoon, every time I was about to lose it, I mentally grabbed that “for- chrissake” and before it transmogrified me into the snap monster, I forced this one insane and contrary mantra into my head “I love homeschooling my kids. I love homeschooling my kids. I love homeschooling my kids”. If any mother repeats the words “my kids” over and over, her heart has no choice but to melt.

And a wonderful magic happened, I stayed in control and calm all afternoon.

Before I soak myself in glory, two statements require declaration, obviously. Firstly, it was Friday afternoon and it’s always easy to cheer yourself up on a Friday afternoon. Secondly, I have only tried this once. As every good cult leader knows, brainwashing requires multiple cycles. So I’ll give it a bash tomorrow to see if it’s took.  

In the meantime, I am mulling and cogitating over more “new” challenges that could be enacted in the next few weeks, so I don’t have to rely on cooking new recipes.

If anyone has any ideas out there (inexpensive & relatively short ones), please holler!

My New Challenges Diary:

Day 1: went to a local park to which I’d never been.

Day 2: Cooked asparagus (yes I’ve eaten asparagus before but for some reason had always been scared of cooking it)

Day 3: Read a French poem – Demain, des l’aube by Victor Hugo. It is simple yet astonishingly beautiful.

Day 4: Cooked chicken tikka masala.

Day 5: Brainwashed myself into enjoying homeschooling

Day 6: Took a break – yippee!

Day 7: Cooked chilli con carne

7 Resolutions over 6 Days for 5 Weeks.

  1. Continued embargo on crisps, fancy cheese and booze (except those used in cooking)
  2. Meditate for ten minutes
  3. Go for a run or a walk
  4. Do something new – I’ve never done before.
  5. Clean the kitchen every evening
  6. Do at least 5 sun salutations every morning
  7. No eating after 7pm (cutting my reprieve down to only one day per week but have a feeling I won’t be able to do it and will revert to Friday & Saturday)

Published by gillsheeran

Former CFO/COO who quit my job to emotionally support my family at the start of the pandemic.

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