Weekend Projects

This One 5-Minute Effort Will Set Your New Year Off Right

published Jan 1, 2021
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Credit: Joe Lingeman/Apartment Therapy

Apartment Therapy Weekend Projects is a guided program designed to help you get the happy, healthy home you’ve always wanted, one weekend at a time. Sign up now for email updates so you never miss a lesson.

The holidays are over, the new year is here, and we’re nothing if not shell-shocked, still, over what transpired in 2020. While I know my situation isn’t everyone’s, I spent many of my days simultaneously overloaded by the stimulation of so many people in the house all the time (all seven of my family members, including me), and lonely from missed opportunities to connect and be together that I relied on in the past and, honestly, took for granted.

And while I saw, happy for them, that others had virtual happy hours and Thanksgiving gatherings, I have major Zoom anxiety. It is not a source of connection for me at all. I FaceTime close family that I haven’t been able to see and it’s great, but I haven’t had much that makes me feel like I’m spending quality time with loved ones I’ve been away from for too many months.

Through this surreal time, I’ve also been remembering so many things and people from my childhood. I guess the times that I felt safe and loved resurfaced in my memory, warm and comforting, as the world around me became unfamiliar, cold, and dark. The shakeup, for many, as I’ve learned that my experiences in this pandemic aren’t unique to just me, has put into perspective what really, really matters, and that always boils down in one way or another to other people, or, more essentially, to love.

This weekend, you’re going to act on a bit of that perspective and put this love into action.

Credit: Urs Siedentop & Co/Stocksy

This Weekend: Call a loved one.

Start the year off tending to one of the things that fills life with meaning: your relationships with others. No need to set up a Zoom, if you don’t want to. In fact, being off camera allows you and whoever you’re calling to focus on the conversation rather than any self-consciousness. (But you can video-chat, if that’s your thing!)

On the heels of a holiday season that may have left you feeling hollow, wishing you could have been with the ones we love, now is the perfect time of year to check in on a loved one or two over the phone. The connection will warm their hearts and yours and set the tone for the year to come.

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You can catch up with weekend projects right here. Share your progress with us and others by posting updates and photos on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtag #atweekendproject.

Remember: This is about improvement, not perfection. Each week you can either choose to work on the assignment we’ve sent you, or tackle another project you’ve been meaning to get to. It’s also completely okay to skip a weekend if you’re busy or not feeling the assignment.