As human beings, birthdays are some of the most happy, exhilarating, joyful, gratitude-inspiring, meaningful, passionate, and life-changing days that take place in our entire lifespan.
We tend to compartmentalize our best emotions, moments, and experiences to that one
day of the year that we celebrate another year of life on earth. For 1 day out of 365,
we truly step back to appreciate and show gratitude for the gift of life, the experiences we’ve had, the milestones we have accomplished, the people we met, the closed ones we cherish, and the opportunities that life has given us. Not only do we show gratitude, we passionately celebrate the fact that we are alive and that we made it through another year. And unlike the other 364 days out of the year, we make sure to practice self-love and self-compassion by doing the things that we love to do—the passions that truly make us happy. And on birthdays, we truly reflect, remember, and realize how short and transient our lives really are.
And because we compartmentalize these incredible emotions, moments, and experiences for that one day out of every year, birthdays become some of the most memorable and joyous moments of our entire lives.
But shouldn’t every day that you’re alive be joyous, exciting, passionate, and exhilarating? Shouldn’t you show your gratitude for the gift of life, celebrate your journey, practice self-love, do what makes you happy, and recognize the transience of life every single day? Wouldn’t life be better if you treated everyday like a birthday?
The purpose of this blog post is to walk you through 4 different ways to make that happen—4 Ways To Treat Everyday Like A Birthday
#1- Show Gratitude Everyday For How Far You’ve Come
What feels better than gratitude?
In 2015, I published a blog post about why showing gratitude on a daily basis is a practice that can transform your life in more ways than one. Expressing gratitude is an all-natural and easy-to-do practice that can super-charge happiness, boost your optimism and help you push through setbacks.
In the bestselling book on happiness, The Happiness Advantage, Positive Psychologist Shawn Achor notes that very few feelings in life are healthier or more valuable for your well-being than gratitude. Research shows that people who express their gratitude often tend to be happier, less depressed, more energetic, less anxious, and less lonely. Grateful people are more optimistic, have better relationships, and they enjoy better sleep.
As someone who is in the habit of writing a daily list of people, places, events, and situations that I’m grateful for, I can attest that gratitude is probably the simplest way to instantly feel happier and improve your state of mind at any point in time.
And the best part is, it’s absolutely free. You don’t have to consume any substances or pay any fees to feel grateful.
So why relegate your deepest and most intense moments of gratitude for birthdays? Why not show your gratitude and appreciation for the country you grew up in, the relationships you’ve been lucky to have, the setbacks you’ve been able to overcome, the abilities that the universe bestowed you with, and the opportunities you’ve been lucky enough to have access to every single day of your life?
Why not express your gratitude right now? After you finish reading this post, make sure to break out a pen and paper and write down 5 people, places, moments, experiences, memories, and situations that you are grateful for. And don’t forget to repeat this practice every single day!
#2- Feel Excitement To Be Alive Every Single Day! Not Just On Birthdays.
For many people across the world, birthdays are the most exhilarating day of the year.
Other than major life occasions like weddings, bachelor’s parties, or school graduations, how often do we really celebrate our lives with passion and excitement the way that we do on birthdays? Other than these major milestones, how often are you excited just to be alive? How often are you pumped to wake up for another day?
Unfortunately, the reality is most people don’t wake up with excitement to get to their daily grind. Because according to recent Gallup data, almost 70% of employees are not engaged or excited about their jobs.
Almost 70% of us are dragging ourselves out of bed every morning and going through the motions at jobs that we aren’t fulfilled by, just to make a living. As Tony Robbins would say, most of us are caught in that trap of making a living rather than designing a life.
That lack of engagement and enthusiasm at the workplace is problematic because there are not enough people on our planet waking up everyday excited for another day of life. Unfulfilling daily grinds are sucking the excitement out of our lives.
The good news is, you don’t have to quit your job or switch careers to operate with a Birthday Mentality every single day of the week. Treating Everyday Like A Birthday is a simple mind-shift that you can start embracing right now by approaching every moment with a sense of gratitude for the opportunity to live another day as a human being on planet earth.
Think about this. The often-quoted statistic on the odds of being born a human being is 400 Trillion to 1.
That’s right. The odds that your great-great-grandparents, great grandparents, grandparents, and parents would all connect with each other through a never-ending link of unlikely coincidences that culminated with you being born is 400 Trillion to 1.
The fact that you are even alive as a human being on earth is a miracle.
The world is more peaceful than it’s ever been. The human lifespan is longer than it has ever been. And emerging technology like The Internet and social media provide more opportunity than ever for people starting with almost nothing to launch incredible careers and make a huge impact on others.
So no matter how bad your life or your job might appear to be, always take the time to appreciate the fact that you’re being here is a miracle.
And don’t forget, out of all 7 billion of the humans on earth at the moment, you are absolutely unique. You are the only you that there ever was or ever will be. Your fingerprint, DNA, passions, talents, gifts, and abilities are 100% unique and irreplaceable.
Everyday that you’re alive, there are opportunities that you and you alone have the ability to move forward with.
So let’s not waste another day dragging ourselves through the motions of unexciting work that doesn’t fulfill us.
Every morning when you wake up, make it a point to fully appreciate how astronomically lucky you are, to be alive and to be you at this moment in time. When you operate with that mentality, everyday will be just as exciting as a birthday.
#3- Practice Self-Love. Do What YOU Love To Do Every Single Day
So much of our day, and so much of our lives, is consumed by tasks that we HAVE to get done, to make a living for own survival and for the survival of our families. We spend most of the day and most of our weeks hustling to make ends meet. Then we use our evenings and weekends for recuperation, relaxation, and catching up on sleep.
How often do you spend time on activities, passions, hobbies, ventures, ideas, and projects that make you happy?
How often do you set aside some time to put in some work on something, not for the money, but purely because you love it? Are you constantly running around all week taking care of responsibilities and taking care of everybody else other than yourself? How often do you spend time on stuff that YOU love?
It’s easy to let the responsibilities that HAVE to get done take over your life. But you have to keep in mind that you aren’t doing yourself or anybody else a favor by neglecting the passions that truly make you feel happy.
If there’s anything the world desperately needs, it’s more people are doing what makes them happy. By pursuing what fulfills you, you’re not only going to put more happiness into the world, you will also generate wealth.
So practicing self-love is not something you should reserve for your birthdays. Make it a point to pursue goals, projects, and ambitions that make YOU happy every single day out of the year. Make your passions as much of a priority as paying your bills. And everyday will feel like a birthday.
#4- Always Remind Yourself How Short Life Really Is
The human lifespan is really short. A baby born today in 2017 can expect to live to about 79.
This life that we live is only a brief snippet of time that includes only 79 rotations around the sun, 948 months, 4,108 weeks, 28,835 days, and 79 birthdays.
And not to be pessimistic, those numbers will only apply if you make it to age 79. Unfortunately and inevitably, not everybody will have the luxury of longevity into the 70’s.
Our time here is extremely finite. This is a sobering fact that most of us rarely take the time to contemplate very often—except on birthdays.
Part of the beauty of birthdays is they force us to consciously think about not only how far we’ve come but also how little time we really have left to make the most of our lives. And by doing that, birthdays help us to truly appreciate the gift of life and focus on living it to the fullest.
My question is: why wait until your birthday to fully appreciate how short life is? Why not set aside some time each day to show gratitude for how far we’ve come and then remind ourselves that the time that we have left to live is limited.
Death is something that we usually avoid thinking about because it’s scary to us or depressing. But what others see as depressing, I see as motivation.
So here is an exercise that will make you constantly consciously aware of how finite your life is and how little time you really have left to make your impact:
Start each day by subtracting your age from 79 (the average human lifespan) to calculate how many years have left. From there, multiply by 12 to see how many months you have left, multiply by 52 to see how many weeks you have left, and multiply by 365 to calculate how many days you have left to live.
And with those numbers in mind, be sure to MAKE THE MOST of the limited supply of years that you have to live. Love, laugh, dance, work, give, and contribute as much as you possibly can.
So to wrap this up, these are my 4 Ways To Treat Everyday Like A Birthday:
- Show Gratitude Everyday For How Far You’ve Come
- Be Excited Just To Be Alive Every Single Day! Not Just On Birthdays.
- Practice Self-Love. Do What YOU Love To Do Every Single Day
- Always Remind Yourself How Short Life Really Is
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