Article Forget new year's resolutions. Instead, use your birthday to assess and create a meaningful year 0 2013 Life coaching Work/life balance coaching life coaching Lifecoachhub Pty Ltd LifeCoachHub
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Birthdays: New Year, New You!

TAGS: coaching, life coaching, business coaching, coach, life coach, self help, personal development birthday, analysis, goal setting creativity, healthy work/life balance, frustrated

Make your birthday a way to create a meaningful year.


As always happens in the lead-up to my birthday, I'm as unsettled as a hatching hen. I'm up. I'm down. I jiggle. A constant process of feeling unsettled until the big day.

It's a crazy two weeks! :)

Throughout this time I have flashes from moments over the last year. Assessments made. Lessons learnt. Gaps identified. Map re-defined.

Then the birthday comes along and I'm as right as rain.

I have a real thing for birthdays being the start of your personal year. So it's good to de-clutter the brain and to start clear-headed.


As an individual, I'm analytical. As a coach, I'm forward-focused.

This year I had a nagging desire to create a headline for the previous year. Then I would know where I stood for the year ahead.

A lot has changed in the last five years and recently there have been some health & family issues in the first half of 2013. So this was most likely my way of getting a gauge on my personal situation & progress.

The phrase that conjured itself and readied itself for dissection was: Elegant Frustration.


Three things became increasingly apparent:

  • Finding an elegant balance does not mean that everything needs to exist in equal measure. That comes with learning how things work best together. Constantly refining what is optimal; which combinations complement each other and you. A recipe comes to mind
  • Underlying this is my keenness for keeping things simple. Yet simplicity is actually complicated ; often shaving away layers of the unnecessary while understanding the purpose and redefining the form of what works best for you

Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.

William Morris

  • Elegance is also about taking technical details and refining them into something less clunky. I imagine the extended hand or the pointed toe of a dancer with those moves held longer or clipped as the dance requires. Either way their timing is perfect

So, that's the elegant part. Analogous with food & movement metaphors. How well I know myself!


Because Frustration comes about when a goal or outcome is being blocked.

Let’s be real. We all want to create the perfect lifestyle for ourselves and that’s why we have ambition and goals to achieve that. I live by it.

Equally, life also happens to you regardless of all the planning you put in place. We are regularly challenged by physical or mental set-backs in one form or another.

And so, like everyone, I dealt with a few. To coin a fine Maya Angelou phrase;

If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.

Maya Angelou


Starts with a strong appreciation of experience, adaptation & contentment.

On y vas!


In assessing the year that's just gone:

  • In some degree, either your understanding or actual outcomes changed in a way you wanted or needed. Acknowledge them and congratulate yourself for them
  • Whatever didn't go your way is something to learn by. Allow yourself to accept it and take the experience forward with the added advantage of feedback

In looking at the year ahead:

A list is great but it can easily remain a list if you don't feel the desire for those things in some way

  • Work with your senses: auditory, visual, kinesthetic. Create story boards or draw or download pictures or use CDs or download podcasts. All of these will create a deeper connecton with your goal and tap into the meaning of what you want
  • Keeping these accessible helps enormously. Ten minutes of flicking & listening through these makes tackling your list more desirable

Photo Credit : Steven Depolo


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