My life is busy and I enjoy my work but the last year has felt pretty challenging. I have had to grow into a new work role which includes some responsibilities I am not very experienced in, have been stretched to complete a professional qualification alongside my work, hosted my eldest daughter’s wedding and supported my youngest daughter starting school overseas.

No big deal in comparison to many I am sure - we all have our stuff to deal with and that includes some devastating experiences for some of us. But as I reflect on what has helped me stay (mostly!) buoyant I realise that for me there are some self awareness ‘keys’ that help keep me energised and coping, versus losing heart and sinking!  

So what has helped me manage this season and stay motivated?

I am very fortunate to live in Singapore, right near the major shopping street, and although this is the ‘garden city’ and very beautiful there is a distinct lack of true wilderness for someone who loves and pines for the wild West Country coastline, Dartmoor and other UK National Parks!

In terms of my hoozyu motivational scores I am high Artistic and moderately high Mechanical and Outdoor. I also need time alone and plenty of thinking space. Hence my love of wilderness! When I first moved here, I worked near a quiet outdoor swimming pool and loved swimming in my lunch hour in the hot sun (not something locals would generally do!) When I shifted work location and was no longer in easy reach of my pool I began to run and even managed to complete a 10km race, much to my own amazement.

It’s only recently struck me why I pushed myself to do this. Running is my time to be alone, to be outside and to enjoy the quiet tree lined streets and lush vegetation of my running route. I choose to run early morning before it gets light and before there are crowds of people around.

My husband always asks - did you enjoy your run?

My reply? No, not really in terms of the running - it still feels a huge effort to me on a physical level - but I keep going because I realise it helps me to stay motivated. It meets my need for outdoor space and thinking time (and I am quite competitive, so when my ‘couch to 5km’ app tells me my pace has improved, that’s cool too!)  

Its been more of a life saver than I realised!

So, what’s your life saver? The unique combination of things that keeps you sane? Coffee shops with friends, sports with your buddies, painting, travelling, journalling, growing your music collection, tending your garden, building robots or hundreds of others things. Identifying your life savers and giving them the space it takes to make a positive difference to your daily motivation may be just what you need.