How To Be Grateful On Your Birthday And Feel Better About Life

So, it’s your birthday. And you are struggling with guilt because you don’t know how to be grateful on your birthday.

Maybe this past year has been a giant suck hole of frustration. I understand, it happens!

Midlife Birthdays Can Be Depressing Reminders Of Aging

Okay, let’s normalize the fact that birthdays can lose their sparkle the older we get. Reading glasses, acid reflux and a general sense of your best days being behind you, a midlife birthday can be a bit of a downer.

Remember When Birthdays Were The Bomb?

We have to admit that for many years birthdays were awesome! Like the time you were seven years old and got your very favorite video gaming system. Mario Carts ALL DAY and then pizza for dinner. Major chefs kiss!! Muah!!

Or that time you were twenty seven and you did jello shots all night with your friends. Then you woke up and ran a marathon! My dude, that was AMAZING!

You Can Be Grateful On Your Birthday If You Are Looking In The Right Places

But now you that you are in midlife, birthdays seem like a one-two punch of life’s disappointments followed by the relentless monster of aging. Toss in some regrets and it’s nearly impossible to feel good about your birthday.

Well, grab your reading glasses, it’s about to get all kinds of happy up in here!

How to Be Grateful On Your Birthday

Okay, let’s start with the basics. You are breathing, you have loved ones and you survived another year of generalized “being a human in the world” bullshit. I mean, that alone is worth celebrating!

But if you find yourself needing more reasons to be grateful on your birthday, here are my top four suggestions.

You Are A Person of Courage

Admit it, you are a person of courage. Being courageous is not about skydiving or micro-dosing LSD. Some days it is enough to simply get out of bed.

And you did that today. You woke up and you got out of bed, searching for meaning and purpose in your life. Some days the smallest act is the truest symbol of being courageous.

When you choose discomfort over disconnection, you are a person of courage. Each time you say “no” to the lesser things of life (numbing, disconnection or hiding) you are a person of courage. So, on this birthday, be grateful that you are truly a person of courage.

You Are More Resilient Than You Realize

The second thing that will help you be grateful on your birthday is recognizing your resilience. Resilience is best defined in this folk parable: “Fall down six times, get up seven”. Every day life has things that can knock you on your butt. Things like taking a financial risk, choosing to end a relationship, or sharing your crazy good idea with your stodgy boss.

The act of commanding our will to “stand back up” is the core of resilience. And if you have made it to midlife, you have chosen to get back up during difficult times. Thank yourself for being a person of resilience. Be grateful on your birthday that you have internal strength.

Be Grateful on Your Birthday That You Have An “Open Heart”

By the time we get to our culturally scheduled midlife crisis, we have figured out that we are not perfect. In fact, we probably have more dysfunction than we like to admit. And that’s okay, welcome to the club of human frailty!

We all have flaws, anxious moments, and at times we get stuck in our own bullshit. But here’s the deal, on this birthday be grateful that you are open hearted.

When you decide to forgive, you are open hearted. When you hear the insult, but ignore it, you are open hearted. Choosing to tolerate ideas and people that you disagree with makes you open hearted.

Go Ahead, Show Radical Generosity

Frankly, allowing other cars to merge in front of you in traffic is an act of an open heart. See how amazing you are? Be grateful on your birthday that you are choosing a life of forgiveness, which includes being slow to anger.

Lastly, Be Grateful On Your Birthday For The Gift of Wisdom

Let’s be honest, you have learned some stuff! Whether it came from the hard knocks club, or you were the one person in the world that took GOOD advice from other folks, you have acquired wisdom.

Who hasn’t fantasized about being born with the wisdom of an 80-year-old person? (I mean..maybe it is my own particular fantasy?) Remember those times when you wished you could talk to someone who could help you make the best decision?

Are You A Good Example Or A Terrible Warning?

Well, congratulations, you are now that person for other folks. Making it to midlife and beyond means that your life is a container, full of helpful and educational information.

Your life can be a good example or a terrible warning for others. Choose to be a guide and a light for those under your influence, we need more people willing to share their hard-earned wisdom.

Being Grateful On Your Birthday Means You Share Your Gifts

Want to know the best way to be grateful on your birthday? Take the gifts that you have earned and share them with us. I know that for many people, another birthday is often a reminder of our natural fight against getting old.

But what if we re-framed our birthday as a day to celebrate our growth on the most difficult days?

Conclusion

Birthdays can be difficult and depending on daily circumstances, we can feel a sense of regret. When we struggle to find a way to be grateful on our birthday, we need to take some time to reflect on a core truth.

Each birthday can be a deposit of the most precious thing, a life well lived. A yearly reminder that we have been courageous. Another moment to remember our resilience, we always get back up, no matter what knocks us down.

Midlife Is Magical

We choose to have an open heart for those around us, especially for those that need more compassion. And we offer to share our prized wisdom with those that seek it.

And that my friends, is how to be grateful on your birthday.

Happy Birthday! I honor your life well lived.

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