“Most people believe vulnerability is weakness, but really vulnerability is courage. We must ask ourselves…are we really ready to show up and be seen?” — Brene Brown
I kind of like the dorky, middle-aged humor kind of ring of “Nifty Fifty”.
I had a great birthday though I kept it rather simple and discreet. About 10 friends, dinner. Restaurant on a rooftop. A couple of hours of talking, lovely gifts opened, a toast. In bed by 11pm.
A simple celebration not because I’m too old to stay up late or wanted to share my age only with close friends.
The pic top left of this posts are outtakes from a shoot I did to commemorate my 50th. No makeup, special lighting or even a single Photoshop touchup. (However, in making a collage of the photos for this post I did apply a cheesy filter.)
Now, back to my birthday celebration.
One day of celebration didn’t feel like enough. And not because of the numerological significance of the number 50.
I feel like my 50th year is an unfolding process rather than a moment in time.
Celebrating the whole year seems more interesting to me. Why limit the love to just one day?
The older I get, the more skilled I become at what I’ll call “conscious life celebration”. Getting super real about what I make out of life, and what I allow life to make of me.
So, I made a list of 50 Things I’d like to do and be for this year, from one birthday (March 31, 2015) to the next (March 31, 2016).
My question to you>> Have you ever made a one-year list of intentions/wishes/goals that began on a day other than New Year’s Day?
Tell me about it or send me a copy of the list
WHAT I WANT TO DO AND BE THIS YEAR (March 31, 2015 to March 31, 2016) in no certain order:
- Get back to my neglected container gardens– outside home and the one at my studio.
- Go back to Asia.
- Go back to Mexico.
- Travel to a place I’ve never been.
- Another mini-holiday in Big Sur.
- More 3 hour baths!
- Try more new recipes and cooking styles.
- Archetype re-balance: more Lakshmi (I’m generally Kali or Saraswati.)
- More deliberate (planned) socializing (I’m either a hermit or an impromptu socializer.)
- Make at least 2 virtual courses for clients.
- More Abundance Mindset
- Read more fiction and poetry. (Decades ago, I pretty much read ONLY these.)
- Try making fermented foods, beginning with sauerkraut (Raw kraut is expensive and I eat it daily.)
- Try making own almond milk (again, daily, expensive)
- Adjust diet & activity/movement to current age (My body is changing too fast and so are its needs.)
- Take lots of photos as a way of seeing rather than archiving my life.
- Back to dance class.
- Skydiving– is this the year?
- Explore a wisdom tradition that I don’t know so much — or anything–about.
- Jewelry of the year: Rose-gold.
- Read more tarot.
- At least 1 museum exhibit per month
- More african violets around my bed! (Love this for reasons beyond my comprehension.)
- Purge like nevah before! Lots of space for the new.
- Share more of personal self with my clients and audience. In fact, BAKE my personal self into my work.
- Blog a really good list of book reviews with unexpected choices.
- Stay current with yoga apps.
- Ditto for meditation apps
- Work smart. Continue the 4 hour per day desk rule, for one thing.
- Get back to walking more than 10 miles per week (I love walking and 10 miles/week isn’t enough.)
- Practice and teach more pranayama.
- Love. More. And Wiser.
- New website for Foster & Flourish
- Continue to develop the Meditation-Mapping toolkits and building audience.
- Promote books more + effectively.
- Expand my peer-to-peer network.
- Collaborate more.
- At least 1 vase of flowers in my home at any given time.
- Go to more conferences.
- Attend at least one retreat that’s longer than 7 days.
- Listen smart. Everyone is the Guru.
- Is this the year to finally get another pet?
- Take more of my own advice.
- Shine as bright as I want and if people don’t like it, too bad I am fucking fifty. (At my best, I’ve been pretty good at this, but can always get better.)
- Don’t spread self so thin. Stay the course more and more. (I’m good at change and sometimes change too often.)
- Wear more dresses. (I love dresses, despite my choices over the last decade.)
- Sing and dance everyday. Preferably at the same time. (I’m pretty good at this as well, but, when life gets tough or speedy, singing and dancing falls into the ditch.)
- Watch more movies.
- Keep better connections with old friends– and not just on Facebook.
- Less coffee, more tea in the morning.
Stay tuned. I’ll keep you posted.
One guideline for the exploration of this list: I’m allowed to kill 2 birds with one stone.
(I don’t kill, but you know what I mean.)
For example, if I go back to Asia and, while there, go to someplace I’ve never been, that’s 2 items off the list.
In my mind, this isn’t a race or a score-keeping exercise despite what it might sound like on paper or in this blogpost.
It’s a way to draft a map of my journey, then look at where I diverged and why and how it all worked out.
So that another year whizzes by and I don’t spend my next birthday mumbling, “Where did the year go?”
Here’s a bigger reason.
It’s a way for me to show up as the same person in work and life….rather than as two separate performers in two separate arenas doing two different dances. The double arena dance is exhausting, not to mention fractured.
So, another question for you>> Ever shared a list like this with another person, group, or lots of people,including those you’ll never meet in person (like I am here)? let me know.
I hope reading this somehow took you deeper into yourself and the choices you’ve made and will make.
While reading, were you making your own mental list or reflecting on one you have already? Let me know.
And, in case you’re wondering…
Yes, I do feel bit vulnerable sharing this list in such an open, direct way with complete strangers.
I also LOVE sharing this with you, even if you’re a stranger.
I think we all benefit from looking at life over one another’s shoulders.
And what should I really be afraid of?
What do I have to hide?