It’s the question that has been asked and answered perhaps more than any other over the past 11 months. And a question that many of us may not have always answered with total honesty.
For the most part, I have been able to answer positively. Despite the extreme challenges the pandemic has thrown at us travel folk, my natural optimism has held firm, and the incredible resilience and spirit consistently on show from my Holidaysplease HQ and homeworking colleagues has lifted me every time a little wobble has chanced its arm.
Plus, instead of a daily commute, early-morning dog walks as light wakes and shines upon the lovely countryside have been a real joy of lockdown days.
I have strolled through springtime with its explosion of new life, through hazy summer fields kissed by dew and red skies illuminating autumnal gold-leafed trees.
But now the cold, dark, wet morning walks along muddy canal towpaths in wellies that have sprung a leak have arrived – and I’m more than ready to swap them for commuting and busy days back at Holidaysplease HQ with the team all fired up for peaks and the year ahead.
So, ask me how I’m doing right now, and I may not answer honestly. If I were to be honest, I wouldn’t be alone in admitting to a dip in mood. A recent Ipsos Mori study reported six in 10 Britons are finding it harder to stay positive during this third national lockdown, and only 7% of the population are finding it easier to be optimistic about the future.
One of the explanations for so many more people feeling this way now can be found on a spectrum that psychologists call “reward-seeking behaviour”.