My Last Day of 2013, Celebrating Holidays, and the Joys of Personal Growth

The Sun Behind the Trees
A picture from today
Looking back on the year 2013, I can say that all in all this year was the best year of my life so far. I feel I’ve accomplished a lot this year, and made my life better than it was before. I won’t bore you with much detail, but, among other things, I’m especially happy with my personal growth.

The thing with self-work is that it may be very difficult in the beginning, but the more you grow, the easier the process gets. Don’t get me wrong, it’s never easy, but when your self-esteem grows, when you feel safer, when you become more aware, when you have intellectual, emotional, and moral clarity, then even in hard times and difficult situations your emotions don’t overwhelm you, you consciously understand what’s going on in you and around you, you understand reality better and accept it, you are able to handle stress better, make more rational decisions, take better care of yourself, and be a much more mature person in general. After doing serious self-work for some time, you may notice that personal growth happens in a geometric progression. In time, your insights, observations, extrapolations, analyses, and decisions are quicker, clearer, and correct more often. Your relationships become better – because you have a better relationship with yourself. You understand others better – because you understand yourself and reality better. It’s a really beautiful thing. Self-work is the most valuable thing I’ve invested my resources in.

Today is the last day of the year. Recently several people asked me how will I celebrate it. Now, official holidays are not that important to me. I’m pretty happy with my daily life, and there’s not much that I can’t do on any other day, therefore official holidays, like Christmas or New Year, don’t mean much to me.

Actually, now it’s kind of foreign to me to see that many people wait for a certain day to “feel” or do something specific. For example, people wait for Christmas to spend some time with their family and give gifts; people wait for Thanksgiving to express their gratitude; people wait for a new year or birthday to change something in their life (and that’s why New Year's resolutions don’t work – there’s no intrinsic motivation); people wait for New Year’s Eve to spend some time with their friends; people wait for All Saints' Day to feel sad about people who are not with us anymore; people wait for funerals, crises, sicknesses, accidents or holidays to change their life. Many people do things and “feel” things because “they’re supposed to” – not because they actually want to do that or really feel that. Many people are not authentic; many people are very scared and confused; sadly, many people are not living, they are spiritually dead.

Some time ago, I more or less was one of such people. Today, I feel pretty happy in my daily life. If I’m happy and I really want to do something special, I do it whenever I feel like it. If I want to interact with people who are close to me, or express my gratitude to them, I just do it whenever I feel like it. If I don’t want to interact with someone or be somewhere, I don’t do that or don’t go there. I don’t make New Year's resolutions, I set goals and plans and work on them whenever I come up with them. If I’m really sad about something, I cry or grieve. If I’m happy and excited about something, I smile and laugh. If I want to spend my day relaxing, I do that – if I want to spend my day working, I do that. And so on….

Therefore official holidays and traditions don’t have much significance for me. Especially because I don’t enjoy popular celebration methods, like overspending money on stuff you don’t really need, overeating, getting drunk, being in a loud environment, watching TV, participating in meaningless conversations, being around people you don’t really like, etc.

So how am I celebrating my last day of 2013? Today I’m celebrating myself with myself – and it’s not necessarily something “special” or unusual…. I had a long night sleep. After waking up, I lied in bed for about 15–20 minutes – as I usually do – and contemplated my nightly dreams and other things that were on my mind. Today I don’t have any clients (however I’ve had clients on Christmas and on other holidays). So I ate breakfast and decided to go for a run and exercise in the park in an amazing, springlike weather. It was extremely enjoyable; I even took some pictures (see below). Afterwards I grabbed something to eat and came back home. Now it’s 6:30pm, and I’m finishing this blog post. Later I’ll make some homemade food and spend a cozy evening with myself by doing whatever I’ll be up to. I’ll probably watch a movie or something similar on my PC, or maybe I’ll do something completely spontaneous, we’ll see. So I better end it here and go on with my “celebration” (although I would say this blog post is a part of it).

Happy New Year, everyone! See ya next year!

Pictures from today (clickable):

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  1. I love your scenic photos, Darius. Like you, I find my daily life satisfying and don't pine for a 'special' day to do things I want to do. And I don't make 'resolutions' at new years anymore--a new year isn't really a motivation to accomplish something, and instead of making a resolution and then feeling bad or beating myself up because it doesn't happen, I prefer to work on my goals and especially work through the obstacles I find, with understanding and patience for myself. I celebrated quite like you describe yesterday, and had a good time nonetheless.

    take care in the new year,

  2. Hi Caden,

    good to hear that you're doing well and that you've chosen to live a similar lifestyle. Yes, my New Year's Eve was very enjoyable. And yesterday (on January 1st) I had a couple of clients -- I don't mind it at all.

    Best of luck in the year 2014!


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