This year was challenging, wasn’t it? I found it the hardest times I’ve ever had to live through.  I was scared and upset a lot of the time.  I was so full of anxiety and stress I honestly feared I might have a heart attack.  I’m serious.

But I made it through.  I can live through anything, I’ve found. 

This year I want to do more than live through challenges.  I want to rise and build a life for myself, my partner and my children that will thrill and satisfy us deep in our souls.

Here is my short list of advice for you if you, too, want to rise above surviving and start thriving in 2016.

Be kind to yourself

You deserve love. You deserve to love yourself.  Go and dress in the clothes that make you feel special.  Hire someone to do nice things to your body like a relaxing massage or a pedicure with cute toenail polish or a really great haircut by a salon that gives you a scalp massage.  Take more baths. Buy more great books and music.  Look at your body and see how wondrous it is no matter what shapes it takes.  Enjoy a bottle of wine or a cup of tea and some very expensive, locally made ice cream. You are wonderful and you should treat yourself accordingly.

Ask for help

There are no superwomen.  Or, there are but they actually have a tribe of amazing people around them who help them do what they do.  You don’t have to go it alone. You don’t have to suffer in silence.  You don’t need to appear strong. You don’t need to suck it up.  The people who like and love you want to help, if you need it.  And we all need it once in a while.  So ask.  Don’t even apologise for asking.

Share the triumphs and the challenges

Talk to other people.  Call your parents, if you still have them in your life.  Visit your grandparents, if they are still here.  Reach out to someone you’ve always wanted to get to know better.  Especially when things are tough. Sharing our struggles makes the burden lighter and helps us put things into perspective.  Share your triumphs, too!  Don’t apologise for being amazing.  Let people be excited for you.  Good news should be shared.

Forgive everyone

Don’t hold grudges.  Grudges are the thieves of joy.  Just forgive people for the things they’ve done. Imagine everyone is someone’s little child and forgive them as you would a little child.  You will be shedding a great burden. Your heart will feel lighter when you don’t have to carry around all those negative feelings.  Joy will take hold and grow within you.

From the Hamilton Doula Group family to yours we wish you love, health and prosperity this year.