There’s something an approaching birthday does to me and I think it has gotten even more obvious as I grow older. It happens in two segments…Because my birthday is right in the middle of the month, the first half of the month, I find myself withdrawing into me, I try to separate ‘noise’ from ‘signal’, I ask myself what I have done with the past year and how much progress I have made. Sometimes, I make lists so thinking is easier.
Post-birthday, which is the second half of the month, I ask myself what the next year holds and what I’d like to do before my next birthday comes and again, I make plans which are often in the form of lists. (what can I say? I’m a listmaker…I’ve thought about adding it to the skills section of my resume)
I can’t say this has helped me live a perfect life, because like New year resolutions that everyone makes and forgets after the first week, I get derailed from the path sometimes and trust life, it sometimes throws the curveballs in rapid succession and because I have to dodge them… things don’t always happen as planned.
But the joy in all this for me can be summarized as “Even though I’m not where I want to be, I’m not where I used to be” and sometimes, the happiness and fulfillment that progress brings propels me to do much better in the next year.
I know people who would rather not know though, they’d rather not reflect because all they see is how much progress they have NOT made when they look around them and see colleagues and friends who are “doing much better”. To that, I say, until you count your blessings, you won’t know how many they are 🙂