By Dr. Paula Bloom
I celebrated my 39th birthday this week. It started out as a typical day. Get the kids up, make them breakfast and get them to school. I decided to take the day off from seeing clients. I may make this an annual thing. It was wonderful to have a few hours on my birthday to reflect on the past year and set intentions for the coming one.
A friend of mine described birthdays as a personal New Year’s Eve (thanks Katie!); I like that idea. So, like many of us do on December 31st (and tend to forget by sometime in mid-February), I decided to set some goals for this coming year. Here they are:
1. Spend more time enjoying my kids instead of telling them what they need to be doing next. While “brush your teeth”, “finish those vegetables” and “come on we need to get to school” will continue to be a part of daily life, these need to be balanced with more hanging out, laughter and just being present.
2. Focus on the wonderful things about my husband. After years of marriage, it seems easy to focus on what your partner doesn’t do. There is some research that suggests that the ideal balance of positive to negative interactions with a spouse is 9:1. I’ve got some work to do!
3.Prioritize my spiritual life. After a year of “auditing” a faith community we are finally becoming members. It’s a place that is such a good fit for our family. So often I forget that we don’t need to do this life thing alone. I seem to have daily amnesia about the fact that I can’t control everything and that this fact is a gift, not a burden.
4. Continue on the path to greater physical health. This next year is going to bring some wonderful things. I have a book coming out in the Spring and I know it will be easy to get lost in all that brings. I need to remember that without continued exercise, heathy eating and enough sleep it will be hard to stay grounded and connected to what most matters.
5.Write a daily gratitude list. One of the quickest ways to refocus negative thoughts is gratitude. Our mind is a magnifying glass. Whatever we focus on expands. Focus on worry and it gets bigger. Focus on the positive and those feelings intensify.
Oh, and on today’s gratitude list is FootSmart for allowing me to have this platform to share about the journey to being more comfortable with who I am and what I wear.
What do you think of my friend Katie’s idea of birthdays being a personal New Year’s Eve? What “resolutions” would you set?