birthday card takeout

Another birthday has come and gone. 

I would LOVE to tell you that it was the best birthday yet, but I would be lying.   

Let me sum up my day here:

  • Keith took the day off to spend time with me (how sweet!) but instead spent the day feeling ill and in bed.  
  • The girls weren’t the best behaved & my birthday dinner at Tabule was a bust (we actually packed it up to eat at home).  
  • I spent the day thinking “I should be in Mexico right now, eating Spanish Rice“. 
  • Everyone was in bed by 9pm so I hung out solo and ate cupcakes. 

birthday card from kids

I know I totally sound like Debbie Downer right now, but I’m just setting the stage for the rest of this post (which is all POSITIVE I promise!)

Yes, the day was crappy (and cold) but the gifts made up for it.  Now this is funny because I am *NOT* a gift person.  I would MUCH MUCH rather enjoy a good meal with friends and family, then open any gift. 

But this was a gift I really and truly appreciated, including a day at the Ritz Spa (I’ll be booking that faster than you can say “no kids for 8 hours”!).   Every mom needs a ‘day off’ guilt free.  

The better part of the gift (yes it gets better!) was this thoughtful journal – Five Minute Journal.  

 gratitude journal moms

The Five-Minute Journal asks you to spend a few minutes every morning / night reflecting on the day.

Part of the reflection involves a gratitude exercise (in the evening) but even more interesting was the morning routine.  It requires you to answer this simple question before you get out of bed.

What would make today great?

I love this question. 

Instead of looking back on the day thinking “If only I did X, today would have been better” (which I do often) I can look ahead each morning and say “I am going to do X because it will make me happy.

As they say in the book, answering this question is:

“taking a step to…point out and engage in activities that would make your day better.  You are building new pathways in your brain that allow you to see what you can do to improve your well being everyday.”

Here are mine:

1) A quick sweat session at the gym (I always feel so refreshed after a good workout)

2) A cuddle and chats with my hubby after the kids go to bed (bowl of coconut milk ice cream included)

3) Write a blog post about what would make today great (so other moms can do the same) – check!

gratitude journal moms

Finding 5 minutes everyday sounds simple…unless you’re a parent.   I hardly have time to pee or take a shower some days, so writing in the Five-Minute Journal is a stretch.  That said, personally this exercise is one of the important things I should make time for.  

My mind is always racing as a mom – I end up chasing it all day, yet get no where.  

My best days are the ones I feel in control of.  The days I have “a plan” versus those I just drift through and come out the other end feeling unproductive, unfulfilled, unsettled.  Unless of course, my plan is ‘not to have a plan’.  I like those days too!

So I’m all for taking a few minutes to calm my mind, focus on the day ahead, and celebrate the day past.  For myself, my family, my clients and anyone else who crosses my path. 

I just wish I had this Five Minute Journal (and this question) years ago.  

Especially when I had Sienna and struggled through my days waiting for something good to happen.  I would have been able to go into the day (and into meals) with a positive perspective. 

I also wish I had this on March 28th.   My lack luster birthday could have been GREAT if I answered this question.  Instead of waiting for fun things to happen I could have put my energy into DOING those things.   Ah well, there’s always next year!   I just have to give a shout out to my hubby for the thoughtfulness.  And to my girls for the super sweet handmade card (nothing better, right moms?). 

Even if you don’t have the book, take a few minutes tomorrow morning and ask yourself this very important question.  WHAT WOULD MAKE YOUR DAY GREAT? 

Let me know how your day turns out.