Birthdays should be wonderful events in everyone's life. For some reason, however, grownups do not think of birthdays the same as kids. While kids see it as a happy moment with lots of gifts, grownups think of the birthday party as a checkpoint for their life and expenses, expenses, expenses.
Obviously, when you are happily wealthy, this is not a problem at all. I remember the stage in our life when we could spend money on everything we wanted and the dilemma was whether to travel to China for my daughter's birthday for 3 or 4 weeks. This may be fun, but most people do not have this luxury.
Most people think a lot about what to buy and how much to spend, so it becomes very hard to answer the question, "What would you like for your birthday?"
My sister always said she would like a magic ring that grants her all her wishes. I remember asking her if she knew what to wish for if the ring could give her all her birthday presents up to 100 years old at once.
It is not easy to think 100 years from now (or whatever you have left until you are 100), so maybe it is good to make this list. Then, when yours husband/wife and kids ask what to get you, it will be something you really want.
This happens to me every year: I decide I would buy something specific for someone's birthday, but when the birthday arrives, I forget. Closer to the birthday, I pay attention to everything the person says in order to come up with a suitable idea. A good idea is more important than the present itself. If my friends and family all had lists of birthday presents, they could just share them with me and get exactly what they wanted for their birthday.
Birthday gifts are supposed to make you happy, so in a way, your happy list and your 100 things to do during your lifetime are great starting points. When making a list of things you want for your birthday, look at these lists and share them with your loved ones to give them inspiration. You see, on my happy list, I wrote that I love hot chocolate and for my birthday, the kids made me a nice hot chocolate with lots of froth and Eden (who used to work at a café, even decorated it with a heart shape). It was as easy as that.
Here are some ideas and tips to add to your birthday list. I am using some of mine and I hope this will trigger some ideas about what you like.
- Think of a theme you like for your birthday party.
- If you like surprises, think of how you would like your family/partner/friends to surprise you. I know you are thinking, "But if I ask for it, it's no longer a surprise". Actually, it does not have to be like that. People can get ideas from your list and use them totally differently.
- Think of things you want but will never buy for yourself.
- Think of ways to pamper yourself on your birthday: massage, special hair cut, romantic dinner…
- Think of travel destinations you can put on your wish list (and wait for times where you your partner/parents/family can afford to send you there).
- Think of special shows you would like to watch, a special singer, a theatre play or a movie.
- Think of books you would like to have. Maybe you would not buy them for yourself, but you would love them as a gift.
- Think of restaurants you would like to visit on your birthday. In my family, the tradition is for the birthday person to choose their favorite restaurant and we have a special dinner there. It is a great gift and it appears on everyone's list.
- Add to your list things that you would buy yourself when you have the money and others can give you to make life a bit easier. I am sure you know how happy people are to know that you want something and you would be happy if they gave it to you as a present.
- Add to your list luxury thing for the house that you would like to receive. I once told friends I loved a kind of white serving bowls and I was so happy when they bought them for me on my birthday.
- If you love plants and gardening, write them down on your list.
- If you love gifts labeled with your name, write that down on your list. This will give people lots of ideas for gifts.
- If you have a hobby, let other people know about it.
- Kitchen, tool shed, yard, garage, living room, bedroom - go over your house for more ideas.
- Car, bike, roller blades, surf board, kite, basketball - go over sporty things you like to do for even more ideas.
- Work and commute - lots of ideas there.
- Anything else? Share with everyone via the comment box below.
It is much easier to give someone what they want for their birthday, so when you are done with your list, leave it someplace noticeable to allow others to see it. Whether they buy what you have listed or not, you can always use your list to give yourself a gift for your birthday.
Join me next week for "100 things I can do to improve my life".
Happy Birthday (whenever yours is)!
This post is part of the series Make a List:
- Make a list: List Making
- Make a list: About Myself
- Make a list: Friends and Friendships
- Make a list: My Lifetime
- Make a list: Things I am Happy about
- Make a list: Childhood Memories
- Make a list: Ways to say “I love you!”
- Make a list: What I like about me
- Make a list: Things to ask for my birthday
- Make a list: Improve My Life
- Make a list: Things to tell my parents
- Make a list: Beliefs about Money
- Make a list: Feelings I Want to Feel
- Make a list: If I Could Live Forever
- Make a list: Beliefs about Kids
- Make a list: Beliefs about Kids cont.
- Make a list: Events that have shaped my life
- Make a list: Ways to be kind
- Make a list: Be More Productive
- Make a list: Mistakes (and what I can learn from them)
- Make a list: Expectations
- Make a list: Beliefs about Traveling
- Make a list: Rules I Follow
- Make a list: Good Parenting Qualities
- Make a list: Excuses
- Make a list: Quotes to live by
- Make a list: How to use my time better
- Make a list: If I were Santa Claus
- Make a list: If I had one year to live
- Make a list: Things that Make Me Happy
- Make a list: Movies I loved
- Make a List: My Fears
- Make a List: Find your Happy-ism
- Make a List: Inspiring People
- Make a List: Books that have changed my life
- Make a list: Inspiring Movies