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January! What’s not to love?

‘How to survive the January blues,’ they shout. ‘13 ways to survive January,’ they boom. Anyone would think January was some terrible morale-sucking, nervous-breakdown-inducing ogre. Well, here’s a radical thought: I feel less break-downy (oh God – moronic fate-tempter alert) right now than at any other time of the year. Sure it’s a bit gloomy, a bit chilly, a bit tax bill-y. But there are no surprises there. And it’s the insidious surprises that send the train careering off the tracks… usually. The slings and arrows. The stabs. The creeps.

January is the cosiest of the cosies. Everything to hope for, nothing to go out for. Early bedtimes and hot baths and the telly is so unutterably shit that we might even watch some good ‘uns we never got round to. Or read a book. Or, at least, start a few books. Face masks, hair masks, body lotion, cuticle cream – all that jazz is going on round our gaff. Very little money is spent, very little planning is done. It’s the Sunday morning of the year. Granted, February is probably the Sunday afternoon.

January’s days are longer than December and January only asks of us what we choose to ask of ourselves. Want to go to the gym? Well, there’s nothing getting in your way. Thinking of pressing reset on your career? This might be the month where you can carve out a little thinking time.

Because, where January may not deliver sunshine and parties, it does deliver space. To think, to wonder, to grow. To look the hell after yourself. Whatever that means…

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