Yet another year comes to an end. I’m amazed at how time flies by. We were just at the beginning of 2017 and now we’re on the brink of 2018.
How has it been for you, dear friend?
Mine has been a mixed bag.
Through the difficult times, I’ve emerged stronger with a standalone spirit.
I took up tasks I never thought I could do by myself.
On the other hand, I still need to work on getting over my fears.
So I’m just going to keep at it. I’m determined to face my fears in 2018.
I’ve asked several families I work with, “what do you want to achieve for your child in 2018?”
Though worded differently by every parent, the essence remained the same.
Everyone said they’d like their child to continue to make progress and be happy.
I can almost hear you saying it too, “I just want my child to be happy.”
As I sit with this last article for 2017, I’d like to share 3 messages with you. 1. Make your suffering count
It was painful for me to watch Mohit go through his seizures this year. One particular day, he had 2 big ones.
In the process of finding a solution, I realized I had a block against getting EEGs done. Mohit’s resistance coupled with heavy sedation had made me wary of EEGs.
This time I decided to catch the bull by its horns.
I let go of my own anxiety and went ahead with the EEG- without sedation.
I told Mohit his cooperation was necessary and explained the urgency of this EEG.
For the first time, he allowed the gel and electrodes. We got a good 40 minute awake- asleep EEG.
To achieve anything, one has to step out of one’s comfort zone.
It can be done only with determination.
Each of us has certain tendencies. Your suffering brings up this tendency.
You have to be mindful to observe it.
The situation gives you an opportunity to change this tendency.
When you do so, you grow.
Let your suffering count. Get out of your normal tendency and comfort zone and grow.
You’re not the same person you were a year ago, a month ago or a week ago. You’re always growing. Experiences don’t stop. That’s life. And the very experiences that seem so hard when you’re going through them are the ones you’ll look back on with gratitude for how far you’ve come.
– Marc and Angel 2. Learn to say ‘no’
Stand up for yourself- even if it means standing alone.
Remember, you are your own best friend.
Say not to negativity, disrespect, rigidity, to self imposed limitations or limitations set by others.
I had written an indepth article about this a couple of weeks ago.
When we let go of negativity and toxicity, we make room for positivity to enter our lives.
We’re emotional beings. This year has taught me to not be so emotional. Let things go. Release them. Detach yourself from them.
Stop turning your emotional television to watch the same program over and over again, the one that shows how much you suffered from a certain loss: that is only poisoning you, nothing else.
We need to let go of situations and people. The key is in your hands. It always has been. 3. Work on your own happiness
Shawn Achor, happiness expert and author of several bestsellers, defines happiness as, “The joy we feel while striving towards our potential.”
Achor bowled me over with in this wonderful podcast with Oprah Winfrey.
I took away many tips- especially 5 ways to be happy.
a. Write 3 things you’re grateful for- every day for 21 days (the 3 things need to be different everyday.
b. Spend 2 minutes writing every detail you can remember about a meaningful experience you had that day- for 21 days. (Focus on the feeling)
c. Send a thank you note or email to people you’re thankful to have in your life (for 21 days)
d. 15 minutes of mindful exercise- everyday
e. 15 minutes of meditation or mindful stillness- everyday
I’m happy to report I’ve tried implementing all these for the past 2 weeks.
I feel empowered and happier. I’ve realized happiness is a choice. If I’m in dire straits, I hear myself asking, “What’s it going to be- happiness or misery?”
Invariably, I find myself responding, “I choose happiness.”
Happiness is a moment by moment decision.
And it lies within you. Nobody can give you happiness.
“But I asked about my child’s happiness, Kamini. Why are you giving me tips for my happiness and growth?”
I hear you. I haven’t forgotten.
If you are happy – your child and the rest of your family will be happy too.
If you work on your own growth, your child will grow too.
You are integral to your family’s happiness. You are important.
I’d like to end with this beautiful quote. Your own dignity, your own grace, your own gratitude…
You can keep that through everything, if you work hard enough at it.
The rest is just chatter.
– Elizabeth Gilbert.
I wish you and your family a year of Brilliant Achievement.