We are ready for some celebrations!
What’s your favourite month? We love August! It’s the month for sunflowers, going on holidays, relaxing days on the beach, school’s still out, good times. And it’s my birthday! For us, that’s a reason to celebrate.
We’re not the only ones celebrating
One of our corporate clients is having a special birthday this month: The big 40! For him, it’s a bit of a bitter sweet birthday, yet, plenty of celebrations! He associates his thirties with fun, adventure and growth. Listening to his fabulous stories over a cup of coffee and it’s like he’s taking you into another world!
This birthday, he’s decided to go all out. He’s invited family and friends to a rented holiday home where he’ll get the caterers to bring out delicious foods. You can probably his excitement about his party. It’s not only a party. It’s spending time with his loved ones and treating them to something special.
Take some time to review the last year
Birthdays, or anniversaries for that matter, are a great time to reflect on the last year. If you are like me, life can be busy and we may not always recognise our progress and achievements. Special dates can give us that time to take stock. We can also give ourselves that pad on the back. Whether we’ve finally completed that qualification by long-distance learning, started working again after taking a longer break or jumped on the treadmill for the first time, acknowledge your progress. Maybe you even want to include it into your celebrations?
Here are some questions you can ask yourself:
- What were my proudest moments last year? And how do I define proud?
- What were the three biggest challenges I faced? How did I overcome them? What did l learn from them?
- For what or whom was I grateful last year?
- Who or what has influenced and impact me this last year?
- What did I learn about myself (my family, friends, work, hobbies, etc.) that surprised me?
- How have I changed as a person over the last year?
- Have my actions last year brought me closer to achieving my goals? Have they been in sync with my values?
Create a year with meaning
Just as you look back, you can set your intentions for the next year. Intentions give you more purpose and are thought to be more effective then just goals alone. By giving your year ahead more aim, you can live a (more) fulfilled life.
Here are some questions that can help you prepare for the next year:
- What are my top three goals for the next year?
- What do I want to learn this year? How will I learn it (e.g. take a class, attend webinars, get a coach)?
- What do I want to give to my family, friends, work, hobbies and community (local and larger)?
- How will I look after myself? Physically, mentally?
- What pressure do I want to remove?
- What a word or phrase will I choose as your motto or mantra for the year ahead?
- How will my future year look like? Create a collage if you are a creative person or prefer this over expression yourself with words.
And then there are gifts
As with other celebrations, we seem to get so many presents. A few years ago, we’ve decided in our home to limit the amount spent on Christmas gifts. It’s EUR 30 (USD 35, AED 128). For some, this is a lot while many folks seem to spend more. We choose this to focus more on something meaningful without going into debt.
As for my birthday, there won’t be any gifts. I won’t, however, say no to birthdays. They give you an opportunity to write a personal message and wishes for the birthday kid. When was the last time you actually wrote something with a pen?
Still going for an experience
Don’t run to the shops and buy a crappy last minute present. You can carefully check with the birthday child if they even want a present. The trend for experiences continues. And if you live in a transient place like we do, you never know when people move. Who wants to relocate all their junk? Nobody we know wants this. Here are some ideas for experiences:
- Ziplining session
- Cooking class for a cuisine they’ve been wanting to try out
- Spa treatment for while you’re watching her kids
- Walking photography tour around their city
- Support to write and publish their book
Donations are also high up there. For folks like us who have everything we need, let’s give something back. Whether it’s a donation to the Irish Cancer Society, a feline friends chapter or the local library, there are so many worthy causes out there.
We are getting ready for August and all the celebrations. What are you getting ready for?
Until next time,