The third Monday of January is Blue Monday: said to be the most depressing of the year according to a concept first published in 2005, which claimed to have calculated the date using an equation. The equation considers weather conditions, debt level (the difference between debt accumulated and ability to pay), time since Christmas, and the time since New Year’s resolutions have been broken.
Despite the equation, Blue Monday is largely dismissed as pseudoscience (and an invention to sell more holidays…) but it’s as good a day as any to take stock of any changes you might have decided to make for 2022. Maybe you have been feeling down – January can be a gloomy month – or you need a bit of inspiration or extra impetus to commit to resolutions, or changes for 2022. The team at London Vision has put together some ideas of things to try for 2022, some that might lift your mood or inspire you!
Want to make new friends or try new things?
Joining an activity group can be a great way of getting out and about, while also making new friends. If you live in Tower Hamlets in East London, local charity Beyond Sight Loss regularly puts on events and outings with blind and partially sighted people in the area.
In Newham, Enabled Living holds a regular coffee morning (currently virtual) on the second Monday of every month. The coffee morning often features guest speakers, and is a great way to meet new people, share experiences and form friendships.
In north London, the Barnet Borough Sight Impaired group regularly holds meeting and events – you can find out more on the BBSI website. VIEW is a new group that has started in Wandsworth which is also holding regular meetings on a variety of topics. Get in touch on email@example.com to learn more about the VIEW events on offer. Middlesex Association for the Blind runs Eye Matter groups in Hampstead and Edgware, with a range of different activities to take part in – including, quizzes, fitness sessions, and musical performances. Get in touch with the Eye Matter team on 07523266421 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you fancy organising your own cultural outing, be sure to check out the Vocaleyes website to learn about the latest shows and events.
Made a resolution to get fit?
If you have made a decision to get into running for 2022, British Blind Sport has a database of people who can act as guides even for those who have never run a step. Download the Couch to 5K programme and get pounding the pavements. Once you have got to 5K, try a Park Run! They are happening in a park near you on a Saturday morning at 9am. Start your weekend off right with a 5K before breakfast. Find out more on the Park Run website.
Maybe running isn’t your thing? Try a team sport with Metro Blind Sport! There are regular tennis, football, or cricket sessions for people with sight loss happening all over London. And if you prefer a more solitary sporting pursuit, Metro is running climbing sessions right up until April 2022. Also remember – if you prefer working out at the gym, sight impaired and severely sight impaired people have access to GLL leisure centres free of charge. You can find more ideas for keeping fit and trying new activities on this sports and leisure resource page.
Something more sedate?
Lifestyle changes don’t have to be all about grand plans to get fit or make new friends. You could make a commitment to meditating, or to cooking a new recipe every week. You can find some tips for cooking with sight loss on the Life Hacks: in the kitchen resource page. If you would like to try some meditation, the Eye Matter group runs regular sessions. Get in touch with the Eye Matter team on 07523266421 or email email@example.com. Insight Mind runs mindfulness sessions, poetry courses and meditation. All the courses are specifically designed to be inclusive for people with sight loss. Learn more on the Insight Mind website.
Career or role change!
Maybe 2022 is the year you take the first step towards your next role? The thought of changing roles, or even securing your first ever role, can be daunting. The Thomas Pocklington Trust employment service supports blind and partially sighted people wanting to start, restart or progress their careers. The service offers one-to-one employment advice and coaching through the Works for Me programme, as well as an internship scheme. Plus, the website has a wealth of useful resources, with advice on how to complete application forms, CV templates and interview tips. New year, new career!