Our weekly spot on the site where we talk about things to do with mental health and wellbeing – and we’re just nattering about the small things in life.

Hello and welcome to Wellbeing Matters, our weekly spot to have a natter, and to air anything that might be bothering us. Which right now may be quite a lot.

This article comes to you from the Ministry of Silly Walks, aka my study. In trying to amuse myself and get my toosh moving a little more, I just discovered Faith No More’s Epic is the perfect tune to create new and ever more bizarre shapes to. And this is probably not the most ridiculous thing I will do before lockdown is over.

Over seems so far away right now, five weeks into the official lockdown. Fatigued, weary, yet still holding in place, as we all do what we need to do for the common good. Forecasts are gloomy, with no one quite certain what the future will bring, particularly in the year ahead.

There is one thing that this lockdown has brought into sharp focus. Small pleasures. The little stuff we’ve taken for granted in the past, but now find we miss much more than we could have anticipated.

I’m making a list of the small things that I’m looking forward to. They seem so mundane, but let’s not underestimate the joys of low-key pleasures. Fat, salty chips from the chip shop, eaten out on the seafront. An expensive half hour spent in Waterstones basement, browsing the fantasy section, followed by cake and coffee in their café while examining new treasures. A cinnamon swirl fresh from the bakery.

These small pleasures seem a long way off. In reality, we can hope to experience them at some point later this year. Much like anticipating a holiday, they sit on the horizon, promising sunshine to come.

In the interim, we’re programming in a few home pleasures to lighten the way. In the before times, there would be a goth festival happening in Whitby right now. We’re planning on staging our own backyard version, weather permitting. I do apologise in advance to my neighbours for the howl-a-long to the Sisters of Mercy, but sometimes these things just have to be done.

What small pleasures are you creating right now? What are you looking forward to doing again when lockdown ends? This may seem trivial in light of what is happening in our world, in the grief and sorrow, and huge economic uncertainty. But sometimes it’s the small stuff that keeps us going. Like those salty chips with your other half. And a view of the horizon, melting into dusk. Small steps into that sunshine.

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing right now, take very good care. Thanks so much for stopping by.

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