This Isn’t The Summer I was Looking For.

It’s the morning after the night before. Italy won the Euro2020 competition (I’m happy for Italy, of course I am. After failing to qualify for the last World Cup, coming back to win the next tournament shows a determination to succeed and a willingness to work for it) but England did so well to make it to the final.

We had a young team, and even younger penalty takers in the end. The trio of players who missed or whose penalties were saved have a combined age of 63. That’s barely 10 more years than I have! And when they missed, I wanted nothing more than to go onto the pitch and hug them hard and tell them that, winning aside, they’d done well. It has made me so sad to hear and see people being so hard on them for the follies of youth. Even worse, to abuse them for their skin colour. People can be so mean, can’t they? We are a tribal world, and if you’re not in my tribe, then you’re open to abuse and hatred because… what? You missed a goal in a game? You said a wrong thing about something? You weren’t quick enough or effusive enough about someone I like?

Whether the manager, team or players need criticism for their tactics, skills usage or not pressing forward enough is a different matter, and one beyond my skill set. Perhaps other, more experienced footballers and pundits need to have that discussion. I’m off Twitter for a while to let the dust settle, and I hope the England team do likewise. Now would be a good time as a young footballer to post a short announcement that you did your best, are gutted (sick as a parrot) not to have won, but recognise the immense privilege of playing for your country and look forward to the opportunity to redeem your reputations at the World Cup in November 2022.

It would also be a good time for the trollers to grow up and realise that the world is multi-cultural, and whatever problem they have with people who are different, their response to it (internet nastiness) just reflects badly on themselves. They don’t need to show their nasty side quite so clearly.

We all need time away from social media at some point in our lives. The relentless availability of news, views, opinions and more can have such a damaging effect on our psyche. As a BBC report in 2018 pointed out, using social media can boost our stress levels, increase anxiety, make us feel inadequate in comparison to others, lower the effectiveness of our sleep patterns and may be addictive (those pinging notifications and a rush of endorphins when we get a like/love/retweet are so addictive!). That’s before we add in the negative effects of comparisons and image, whether body or house. Perfection is so overrated, but when the bar for a postable image is so high, anyone who doesn’t fit the perfect image suffers. I know: that’s an area I struggle with, because my home is not perfectly tidy, not scandi chic or even remotely Insta-good-to-go. I’ve learned to let it go, because the alternative is to spend all day every day cleaning to get a decent shot only to have the light fade on me when I’m finally done. Now, I’ll take the shot and share it. Is there rubbish in the background? Too bad. If you like me, you’ll put up with it. Have I painted my nails? Probably not. Life’s too short, and I’d rather be reading.

I think my mood today has a lot to do with a half bottle of wine last night and a grey, overcast sky this afternoon. This is not the Summer I was hoping for. It’s drizzling and I can’t imagine getting home and sitting out in my arbour today or tomorrow, either. Time to do something different.

So today I have downloaded the latest edition of Bella Grace Magazine. I was lucky enough to be sent the Cozy edition last year, but I’ve always missed out on the general magazines, somehow. I know many people rave about them, but the postage to the UK put me off, or the fact I subscribe to so many already, and how can I order something from so far away and justify it….

I downloaded the electronic version. I can read it on the computer, or transfer it to my tablet. I have some teaching to do after work tonight, so I probably won’t settle down properly to read and enjoy it until 7 or 8pm, but I have my evening planned after that. A cup of tea, a decent quiz on TV (Only Connect and University Challenge both start tonight, so that’s my Quiz Mondays back on track) and I shall settle down with computer or tablet and peruse my new purchase. Peruse is a lovely word, isn’t it? It means to read with attention, and I will. With articles on summer playlists, the romance of archery, achieving a summer state of mind and journal prompts and more…. I’m expecting to be a lot more relaxed than I was this weekend.

The housekeeping? That’ll wait.

Today’s header is a photo by Loren Gu on Unsplash. It’s the rain and the sunshine together. Summer rain. Some days the only thing left to do is sit and look at the raindrops on the window. Today feels like one of those days.

How to Hygge the British Way is my gift to the world. I don’t get paid for writing it, I’m not in it for the kudos, financial rewards, to become an influencer, work with brands or otherwise make any money from the blog. That’s why there are no ads, and any products I mention and recommend have either been gifted to me or bought by me with my everyday wages or donations from supporters. Every book I review has been bought and read by me, unless stated otherwise.

I do get a couple of pennies each time someone buys from the Amazon links on my page, as an Amazon Affiliate, but otherwise if you’d like to support me, I like to give something back in return. That’s why I write books. It always feels good if you get a book back in return for some money. You can find a full list of my books at my Author’s Page on Amazon, but especially recommended for this time of year are:

Happier: Probably my most personal book, it’s the story of how I used hygge and the little things in life to help boost my happiness. I still go back and reread to remind myself what I need to do to be a happy human.

Cosy Happy Hygge: Setting up a rhythm to life and rituals to enjoy it to make for a more balanced life that handles waves and storms better.

How to Hygge Your Summer: Hygge isn’t just about candles, throws and fireside cuppas (if indeed it is ever actually about them) and this book gives you ideas for creating hygge ready spaces and paces of life throughout the summer.

If you’d like to support me, but don’t want to buy a book, I have a Paypal.Me account as Hygge Jem. Every little helps, so even a few pence goes towards the books, goods and courses I use and recommend on the site. I’m grateful for every little bit that brings me closer to my dream of full-time writing, and I know I couldn’t still be writing if it weren’t for the support of many readers and friends out there. Thank you all for every little bit of support, emotional, physical and financial, you give me.

If you’ve enjoyed this article, don’t forget to share it or save it so others can enjoy reading and thinking about hygge as well.

3 thoughts on “This Isn’t The Summer I was Looking For.

  1. I completely agree with you regarding the way people are reacting, and I fail to see why people think someone’s race or whatever has anything to do with it. Some people will just use any excuse to justify their nasty comments, even though – as you pointed out – all it does is make them look bad. We’re all human beings, regardless of what part of the world we’re from, the colour of our skin, etc, and people need to get over themselves and accept that.

    On a brighter note: your evening sounds wonderful,and I hope you’re enjoying it. I also hope you find many more hygge moments like it to enjoy during this Summer, even if it’s a damp one this year. Personally I think Spring and Summer got all mixed up, because we had more hot and sunny weather when we should have been having the Spring rains, and are now getting lots of rain when we should be having the sunshine. But there are plenty of things we can do to enjoy the Summer, regardless of the weather, and I hope you continue to find the ones that are right for you.


  2. Jo,
    So well said. I do love how you both called the racist trolls out and found a way to get your evening back. Taking action matters. Pitching a tent in the anger doesn’t fix anything. Thanks for the reminder and example. x


    1. Thank you. I’m a flawed human being, but I know there has to be a way to get people together somehow.

      And I’ve pitched plenty of tents in anger, on the wrong day. I’m so far from perfect.


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