Taking better care of my mental health isn’t really a “new year’s resolution.” It’s more of a thing that I’ve known I had to take care of for years but didn’t, for many different reasons. Like finances, it’s become important to me to be more open about my mental health because it currently isn’t something that I talk to anyone about.
For example, I only told my mom that I was going to therapy after nearly 5 months of seeing my therapist – and even then, I was nervous to tell her! Nervous! I am very proud to work with a lot of mental health providers, and I respect their work immensely, but I’m still a bit shy to discuss my own mental health with others. Why am I so nervous about talking about mental health?
There’s a ton of reasons – social judgement being the big one – but part of my mental self-care has been adopting a “fuck it” attitude, and this feels like a great place to start.
I’m planning much more in-depth posts throughout October about my mental health care journey, but there are a couple of lessons that I’ve specifically learned during quarantine that I want to bring with me into the rest of this “new year” – read about them after the break!
In the before times, I spent at least 90 minutes every day listening to things. I usually spent my ~45 minute (one way) commute and frequent runs listening to podcasts, while I listened to a lot of music to tune out everything else while working.
However, now that I’m working from home, my commute time has gone to 0 minutes a day, and I’m spending my work days watching TV, movies, and various YouTube videos. I’ve even regained some appreciation for quiet moments, and will sometimes consciously stop myself from putting on a podcast or video when I can enjoy silence instead.
Now, I mainly listen to podcasts while going on long walks after work, and sometimes music while preparing meals. Because I have significantly less time to listen to things now, I’ve become more picky about what I choose to listen to. Read about some of my picky audio choices below!
I’ve always considered myself pretty “on top” of my money. As you’ll read below, I’ve meticulously tracked my income and expenses ever since I got my first job 9 years ago, and have never let more than a week or two pass without auditing my money.
Very thankfully!, quarantine has given me some breathing room within my budget. Because of this, I’ve started to ask myself some more questions about what I want to do with my money in the long term. Though I’ve been great with my money in the moment, I’ve never been quite as good at planning for the future. Read ahead for some of my current money management practices, as well as goals that I have for the future!
(And before you read on, I just wanna stress again: I’m in a good financial place right now! In keeping with the theme of this series, I am very fortunate to be able to make more lofty goals with my money in the coming year, and I’d like to share them. I totally acknowledge that other people are in the total opposite situation, and I know that talking about my own relatively secure situation comes off as tone-deaf. But it is also becoming more important to me about being open about my own financial goals and habits – so I’m doing this anyway! Let’s go!)