Improving Her Depression, Woman Tries Something New Every Day for a Year–And Vows to Keep it Up

​Jess Mell Instagram / SWNS

A woman who struggled with depression found a way—actually, more than 300 ways—to improve her mental health by doing something new every day for a year.

Jess Mell says she’s now the happiest she’s been in a decade after trying new things for 365 days, including a try at hot yoga and beekeeping.

During the pandemic, the 34-year-old suffered from anxiety and depression—but the lockdown made her realize that she was depending upon her routine as insurance to keep her going.

So, last year on December 27th—as the pandemic was fading—she decided to try something new every day for 100 days. When that period ended in April, she found herself eager to do more.

One full year later, the Englishwoman has completed her challenge—yet still has no plans to stop.

Jess completed a wide range of ‘firsts’, including bleeding a radiator, using a sewing machine, and joining a gardening group.

From her home in Surrey, she was able to visit European cities like Vienna, Budapest, Copenhagen, Dublin, and Krakow—and, back on home soil, she tried speed dating and line dancing.

“I feel pretty emotional about it to be honest,” said the resident of Redhill. “I can’t believe it.

Jess Mell tried beekeeping for a day – Instagram / SWNS

“I wanted to finish it off with something exciting, so in the end I finished up by convincing my dad to let me sit on the roof of his car as he drove down the road,” she told SWNS news service. “My final one was making my first ever Instagram reel of some of the things I’d done in the year.”

PRO TIP: She adjusted her goal midway through the year, after finding it difficult to do ‘one thing every day’. She settled on simply doing 365 new things throughout the year.

“That way, I could do ten things in one day if I was free.”

Joined sometimes by friends, Jess says the best part about the whole experience has been putting herself out of her comfort zone.

“I feel like I should constantly be doing something.”

From entertaining ‘firsts’—like watching an ice hockey match to playing with miniature pigs—to educational quests—like learning the DIY tasks of hanging a picture and sewing a button—her list is a unique hodgepodge of items.

“It’s now just part of what I do,” said Jess, who’s been keeping track of it all on her Instagram page.

“There’s still a lot more I want to try… What has been so nice about the whole experience has been that whenever I’ve thought ‘I could try that’, rather than putting it off I just ask myself ‘why don’t I’.”

Her Partial List: (Maybe it will inspire you to try something similar)

Got InstagramWatched ETMade a lampshadeGrew a plant from seedBled a radiatorTried origamiWent to hot yogaDyed my hair pinkDid 1000 piece jigsaw by myselfMade muffinsVisited an aircraft hangarUsed the “scary” gym equipmentGot a henna tattooWatched the Great EscapeLearned how to tie various types of knotsLearned to shuffle cardsWent to a life drawing classCompleted a paint by numbersLearned to pick a lockMade/ate a vegan mealHung a picture on the wallLearned to sew a buttonLearned some British Sign LanguageWent to a board game clubLearned to change indicator light bulbs in my carTried a GuinnessJoined a community volunteer groupAte using chopsticksAttended a first aid courseWent to the British LibraryHad an Espresso MartiniUsed a sewing machinePoached an eggPlayed chess for the first timeSuccessfully completed some monkey barsWent to the Tate Modern museumChanged a car wheel (or helped to!)Played golfMade a pizza from scratchDid a French braidWhittled some woodLearned a simple tap routineTried to whistle with my fingers – couldn’t do it loudly!Made a rainbow cakeTried embroideryBowled without bumpersVisited a Mormon TempleTried to start a fire without matches – failed!Tried solderingWent on my first solo tripWent to Belfast/Northern Ireland for the first timeMade butternut squash soupTried knittingDrove a vanUpcycled an old stoolWent paddle boardingTried papier macheVisited St Paul’s CathedralFixed my bathroom plugAttempted to learn to play the ukulele (gave up!)Watched a foreign film without subtitlesWent on my first solo trip outside of the UKMade jam from scratchFed a tortoiseMade tapas from scratch including a Spanish tortillaTried sherryJoined an outdoor fitness classWent on an organized walkMade banana breadTried GeocachingWent to a butterfly houseVisited Krakow, PolandTried local dish, pierogiWent on an e-scooterWent to a poetry reading sessionTried bubble teaTried ZumbaDid a proper tequila shotTried reflexologyDid a solo escape roomWent to a local town’s museumLearned a magic trickAte fish eggsUsed a bidetTried teeth whitening stripsSaw the changing of the guardSat on someone’s shouldersWatched Tower Bridge going upTried a gooseberryMade my own protein barsWent to an outdoor cinema screening.. And watched Casablanca for the first timeWent to a hot air balloon showHad a beekeeping experience afternoonWatched a jousting tournamentTried plantainGave bloodMade a scarecrowSwam in the sea during a stormHad a birds of prey experience afternoonWent on a tractor rideTried pumpkin spiced latteWent to a casinoWent to an OktoberfestFinally worked out how to screen cast from my phone to the TVWatched and painted along to a Joy of Painting with Bob RossMade ice creamSaw the Little Mermaid statueWent pumpkin pickingWent to puppy yogaWatched Hocus Pocus for the first timeWent on a Murder Mystery Train experienceRan up a downwards escalatorDrove a TeslaWent to a sketch comedy showWent to an ice hockey matchMade a key lime pieTried mulled ciderToasted a marshmallow on a firePulled a pint in a pubSnapped a wish boneAttended an online cookery classTried curlingCaught a grape in my mouthStreaked!Went line dancingWent speed dating

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