In the past couple of weeks, I have heard two very contrasting attitudes to birthdays.
On one side, a friend was pleased that he had managed to stretch his birthday over two weekends. At the other side of the scale, a younger client was bemoaning yet another candle on the cake, saying she did not celebrate birthdays anymore.
Personally, I am in the first camp. This is in part because I like any opportunity for a celebration. It is also because the birthday will happen whether I celebrate it or not, so why not try and make the best of it.
If you think birthdays are awful, consider the alternative. Whilst I have been lucky and most deaths personal to me have been ‘timely’ - in ripe old age - my best friend died at 44 and my cousin also died in his mid-forties. They thought they still had lots of potential, lots of time left when they could have been counting off the years, but they never got the chance. Birthdays are markers that you are still here and still able to try all those things you want.
I often use birthdays as milestones with clients. Looking 5 or 10 years ahead, or using the New Year, are all useful markers. However, setting a goal to be reached by the next birthday, or one of the ‘big’ ones (with a 0 at the end of it), immediately creates a more personal timeframe.
It also means that when the birthday arrives, you have a double celebration, reaching the age and the goal.
So before you look in dread at the birthday on the horizon, think of one thing you would like to achieve before that date, however big or small. Instead of hiding under a metaphorical duvet, use the unavoidable fact of your birthday as a tool to pull you forward to a day of happiness.
If this has struck a chord with you and you want to find out if coaching will support you, check out how we could work together and get in touch.