Please open this gift weeks before your actual birthday.
You will need time to wrap your heart, soul and some muscle around it.
Sorry, it is one of those gifts that you actually need to do something, but I promise you will not regret it. A meaningful, fun, authentic birthday full of connection will take time and effort. All good things do. But it will not leave you stressed and exhausted. It will be nourishing and uplifting, aligned with your values, creating great memories, energy and full of heart. And the good news is that you don't need to spend a fortune on it unless you have one.
Oh, and before I share my secrets with you, do you know what else takes effort and time? Overthinking, pressure to have it all perfectly done, shame that stops us from being with our friends and family, financial worries and media. Do you remember that in the past, celebrations were much more straightforward, less demanding, and so much fun? It's not only because we were younger. It is because we had more time, no one knew how the others partied, and we didn't care.
Today we are bombarded by photos of extravagant, crazy stuff out there. If you haven't had the latest trendy experience for your birthday, involving half-naked servers swinging from the chandelier while you eat food that is unrecognisable and leaves you hungry, what kind of neanderthal are you? Sorry neanderthals. That's the message out there.
Asking for help was not something to be ashamed of, and no one cared about the blooming napkins. And we know that it is possible to have that kind of celebration again, but we have forgotten how to.
So here I am to remind you of that.
Just follow these three steps:
1. A good celebration stands on the fundamental three pillars of acknowledging and honouring our NEEDS (rest, being seen, connection, aloneness, joy, pleasure and such) with our DESIRES (going away, being surprised, being pampered, the sky is the limit, celebrate ) and our REALITY (finance, location, time, how much extra energy we have, commitments ). Don't let one pillar bully the other; you will pay the price for it.
2. Don't compromise on the crucial bits and chill about the less important bits. What's important, it's up to you to decide. So if matching napkins is your thing go for it. No judgement here.
3. Flow with the flow. No matter how much you plan and organise, things will not always go that way, and that's ok. Improvise. Ask for help for the love of God. The guests you invited love you. They want to help but are awkward about it and don't know how. So you have to tell them. Don't let silly pride get in the way. If things go pear-shaped, have a sense of humour and laugh about it. It's not the end of the world. Remember, the most memorable things are usually unplanned ones.
I wish you all an authentic, warm, joyful celebration for all your birthdays.
Photo by @alexandradao
You might feel overwhelmed, anxious, annoyed, bored of old ideas and stressed out just thinking of your coming birthday. Maybe you are more of an introvert and don't feel like hosting. Perhaps you are a bit of an overthinker and don't know where to start. Maybe you want to be surprised, but none of your family members knows how to do that. Maybe you are a bit of a perfectionist, so your mood turns sour when something doesn't go right.
Welcome to the club. I experienced all of these myself.
And it's ok.