>After a little bit of bumpy air I’m settling into a more holidayish feeling here in Austin. There was an…incident with the fake Christmas tree. The less said there, the better. šŸ˜‰ Just remember, hammers are not normally tools you need to assemble a Christmas tree.

I’ve started pulling together the Christmas card list. That should be done this weekend. I’ve also been reviewing my list for Santa. This can bring a smile to my face.

The last couple years I noticed an interesting trend. For all practical intent and purpose I really don’t want much at Christmas. Sure I keep a running list of things I’d like to end up with. I tend to use my Amazon wish list as a book list reminder. I’ve always got some camera gear that would be fun to end up with, but it’s never a case of “I MUST have this”.

Somewhere along the way I’ve found that balance point. I don’t walk around depriving myself of small enjoyments. At the same time I’m also not needing to prove my self worth via piles of stuff. At the same time, I’m not proving my virtue by saying, “oh I don’t need this.” I allow myself to want things and when it’s reasonable I get it. If it’s a reach, I simply start to plan long term how I can get it.

If I don’t feel inclined to plan it out, then I don’t want it enough.

If it’s too hard to sit down and budget out what I need to save in order to get a thousand dollar lens for my camera, I don’t want that lens. If it’s too hard to sit down and figure out how I need to eat for the day, then I don’t want the health benefits enough. If it’s too hard to take 5 minutes to sit down and write up my workout, I don’t want the positive results enough.

If I’m inclined to wait for Santa to drop things I “want” into my stocking, I’ll be waiting a long time. But if I take the initiative to figure out how to get what I want, to plan out what I want, then the magic happens. You see at that point in time, where I know I have the things I want in addition to the things I need, that’s when things I never could imagine will show up. That’s where the magic of Christmas morning kicks in. That’s where you find the wonder of exploring under the tree, and the anticipation of waking up to a world of new possibilities.

You see, when you learn how to give yourself amazing gifts, it makes the gifts you receive from others even more amazing.