I began the year staring down in hopelessness at the pile of receipts, books and papers falling off their supposedly organised piles, melting into a collage of admin that hadn’t been touched during the month long frenzy of busyness also known as December. My mind knows that I will feel better by attacking the leaning tower of paper like an unopened tin of Quality Street with the purple ones still intact. But my body is wanting to lie horizontal, eating purple wrapped oblong shaped chocolates and generally avoiding January. I strive to find the organised person that I truly am inside. One I haven’t seen for at least six weeks since the frantic festive season of working long hours, rushing to buy gifts that everyone will like, whilst being powered along by a diet of cheese, chocolate and Chardonnay (Champagne if I’m lucky) and generally having fun with my family and friends. Thank you December!

My mum’s motto ‘if you can’t find something, tidy up’ and HMRC’s end of the month tax deadline circled on a free calendar with a cute dog picture on it, were the mantras I need to get started.  I’d read a Feng Shui book years ago and I remembered that a lit candle on a desk helps to keep concentration and we should ask ancestors for guidance when de-cluttering. So I pushed some of the papers aside and placed a red double frame on my desk with photos of my two Nans, Mary and Betty, with their big encouraging smiles. I lit a candle my friend Kate had given to me in a pretty tea cup and saucer, scented with gentle puffs of jasmine that brought back joyful memories of visiting my family in Singapore. I was ready to get started!

The thing about January, as depressing as it can be, it is an ideal month to catch up. Whether that be processing admin work, watching films before the awards season, seeing friends that were too busy at Christmas or getting back to the gym (and not eating chocolate!). As I settle into the month, I find it calming to package up the previous year as I had with the Christmas gifts I had bought last month. For me, it meant inputting receipts into a spreadsheet and reflecting in a journal on what went well and what I would prefer not to repeat in the shiny new year. I’m writing this with the smug feeling of my tax return being completed and the towering pile of paperwork filed away. My desk is sparkling from a recent dusting and Mary and Betty are still smiling up at me over the lit candle. It is time to plan for 2018 and you know what that means? buying new stationery. January is starting to look better already. Happy new year to you all!

I found the following podcasts also gave me some much needed motivation. Head over to Facebook and let me know how the start of the year has been for you.

Making Good by Jen Gale – ‘what’s stopping you?’

Being Boss – ‘Getting unstuck and do the work’

Follow my stationery addict board on Pinterest for inspiration.