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Leap Day 2024: how are you spending it?

Co-Women is Sussex’s premier women’s networking group which prioritises joy and social events alongside making quality business connections. As 2024 is a leap year, we see this as an extra opportunity to do things our own way – co-founder, Becky Hughes, shares her thoughts on how women in business should spend their additional day…

I vividly remember our previous Leap Day in 2020. The world was going through what was to become a truly painful shift, and I clearly recall that 29th February being one of the final days where things felt a little more carefree. I didn’t even do anything all that significant – I spontaneously met up with a friend for a daytime drink at one of our local pubs, and had a lovely time, but there was nothing grand about the occasion… and that kind of became the point.

Social connections – something we missed I won’t dwell on how 2020 panned out – we were all there, and whilst many of us found some positives, that wasn’t the case for everyone, and almost anyone I know struggled at least a little at some point. For many of us, being sociable was something that we really missed, even if we like our social lives quite low key. We lost the ability to do whatever we wanted without really thinking about it, and it was a chance to recognise the privileges we hold.

Many of us kept post-lockdown bucket lists – yearning to tick off even the simplest items in a quest to “get our lives back” and feel a sense of fun. And that’s a lesson I do my best to keep in mind…

2024: Leap Day pending As I looked ahead to the coming year at the end of 2023, I had a funny feeling about how the pre-Leap Day narrative would play out in some corners of the internet, so I was fully expecting what’s approaching.

In this digital age of not just keeping up with the Joneses, but the entire internet, we love to pile the pressure on ourselves for every special occasion or social event to be absolutely perfect, and worthy of the online aesthetic that someone else has decided is cool this summer.

And sure enough, I’ve started to see a host of “how to make the most of Leap Day” and “what to do with your extra day” content. Personally, I’m tired of it, so here’s what I’ll be doing.

Spend it how you see fit The reality is that we don’t get an extra day, especially not when Leap Day this year falls on a Thursday. Many of us will unavoidably be working. Our caring responsibilities don’t stop. There’s no national holiday for it as far as I can see. So it’s actually kind of business as usual, which feels like a bit of a con to me.

So my suggestion is this: reject the idea of what you ought to do, and do what you want to do. Want to stay at home by yourself and luxuriate within the pages of a good book? Do it. Prefer to go out and treat yourself to a cool solo experience? Definitely do it. Or want to make some friends you haven’t met yet? We’ve got your back there…

Leap Day plans in Brighton with Co-Women Jo and I separately visited Brighton’s Pinot & Picasso studio last year, and knew straight away that we’d like to return with a group of our favourite women. We even had one of their special designs in mind and, would you believe, that very one is what we’ll be painting on our bonus evening?

Tickets are available via our website – come and paint with us in North Laine, where we’ll have a dance, chat and drink whilst the paint dries (because sitting quietly and watching that happen is SO not our vibe), and get ready for the fun to kick up a notch when they dim the lights and let us loose with the UV paint. It might just be the most fun you’ve had this year so far…

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