Why I Intentionally Spent My Birthday Alone & Taking Your Power Back

November 23, 2021

First up: Join Becoming YOU, the brand new small group coaching program I’m launching all about reminding yourself exactly who the f*ck you are.

For more details, click here. We kick off Tuesday, February 7th, 2023 @ 12pm EST. Only 10 spots available, there are still a few left!

And don’t forget to join my email list so that you don’t miss anything! There’s a LOT coming up in 2022 and you’re going to want to make sure you’re the first to know. Jump on the list here.

Onto the podcast episode….

I turned 35 on the weekend, and I decided many months ago I wanted to very intentionally spend my birthday entirely on my own and to do something special for myself to make it totally different.

Multiple people in my life wanted to make plans and I refused all of them (I love you all! ????)

Instead, I booked a long weekend in downtown Toronto, took myself out for some incredible solo meals, had a massage, got in a couple workouts (I never miss my birthday workout), got in a couple of naps, walked a LOT, checked out some cool sights, and even got myself an adorable slice of birthday cake from an amazing bakery.

The point of this is not to preach self-care at you.

I am, however, encouraging you to take your power back.

Stop waiting for other people to make something happen for you. And stop expecting others to treat you better than you treat yourself.

Start showing yourself the kind of love you give to everyone else.

What would that actually be like?

We want people to love us like we love them.

But how can we expect that if we don’t even show *ourselves* that level of love and care?

When was the last time you did something just for you?

Be intentional with how you care for yourself.

Notice the way you talk to yourself.

How you show up for you, the way you hold compassion for yourself, the standards to which you hold yourself. Are they reasonable? Or are they so exacting that no human could ever hope to reach them? (Including you)

All of this got me thinking, I wanted to put together a super small intimate group coaching program, both to celebrate my birthday and to dig deeper into this work with you.

I’ll be teaching tangible action steps that you can implement immediately.

If you’ve ever felt like you’re:

  • Too much / not enough in relationships
  • Losing yourself in relationships
  • Abandoning yourself
  • Always waiting to be chosen
  • Searching for clarity about your next steps

…then you’re going to want to join this very personal program to get coaching from me in an intimate setting with like-minded humans.

Yes! Save my spot in Becoming You.


Download my free 15-page guide Where Do We Begin to learn how to build the foundation to healthy, thriving relationships – including the one you have with yourself

P.S. As a little bonus, this year I posted on Instagram the biggest lessons I’ve learned in my 35 years, and it got a lot of responses so I wanted to send it your way too.

35 Lessons in 35 Years

  1. Show up with the love you want to see and experience more of in the world, and you will receive it back tenfold.
  2. The smallest kindnesses can go the farthest.
  3. Write thank you notes. They make people smile.
  4. When you miss or love someone, tell them. Stop fretting about who texted whom first, or about wearing your heart on your sleeve.
  5. Pain can be your greatest teacher. But don’t forget to feel it before trying to skip to the lessons.
  6. Think critically while remaining wide open to different opinions, and you can learn more than you could possibly imagine.
  7. There’s nuance and grey area in everything.
  8. You will only allow yourself to receive as much love as you deem yourself worthy of receiving.
  9. When someone tells you who they are, believe them. And, when someone tells you who they are – question it. Especially if you haven’t asked.
  10. Joy will find you at the most unexpected moments, right when you thought you wouldn’t meet again.
  11. Trust your inner knowing. Intuition is a combination of logic and feeling. Don’t beat yourself up for not getting your intuition right the first time – logic can only be learned through lived experiences. You have to live it to learn it.
  12. There’s always more healing to do. And no, it’s not going to be linear.
  13. The journey is harder than you think. It’s also far more beautiful.
  14. Letting go may be the secret to happiness. Because life is a series of happy moments strung together, but you’ll miss them if you’re too busy searching for that one destination.
  15. It’s amazing what a workout, cold plunges, and walk outside will do for your mental health and energetic state.
  16. Prioritize people & experiences over material things.
  17. One trip travelling solo is equivalent to at least 5 years of therapy.
  18. When you find your people, it will feel like you’ve come home for the very first time over and over again every time you have a beautiful conversation or visit with them.
  19. The stories you tell yourself and perceptions you have will change your life for better or for worse. Change your perception, change your life.
  20. Your entire life could change directions in a split second when you meet someone new around the corner. Trust me.
  21. Trust = clarity + choice (credit to Jade Teta for this one)
  22. Behave like the person you want to become.
  23. Love and grief will always co-exist.
  24. Similarly….Two truths can co-exist. You can both be right.
  25. Law of collateral beauty: if you can find beauty even through your pain, love will always find you.
  26. You won’t know the strength or depth of a connection until it’s been tested by conflict.
  27. You don’t always have to be the strong one. It’s ok to be fragile sometimes.
  28. The tough conversations you’re avoiding are the ones you need to have most.
  29. Give your love generously and without expectation of reciprocation or acknowledgment.
  30. Show up with honesty, integrity and transparency in all of your relationships. Even when it’s hard.
  31. A relationship ending is not a failure. It’s an introduction to a new version of yourself.
  32. Control is the death of connection.
  33. Ask yourself: how can I let life flow through me?
  34. Consistency = TRUST. Teach your brain how you’re showing up in the world, and being the thing will help you become the thing. And, accept nothing less than consistency in your relationships.
  35. Be genuinely curious, ask more questions, and be interested in others. You’ll be blown away at what you learn.


Book a private call with Emily to work together.

Instagram: @emilygoughcoach


Emily Gough Coaching

Room to Grow Podcast

Questions?  Comments? Want to connect and chat about this episode? You can email me at info@emilygoughcoaching.com, or DM me over on Instagram @emilygoughcoach or Facebook at Emily Gough Coaching.  I would absolutely love to connect with you and thank you for listening in real life and here any takeaways you had from this or other episodes!.  It makes me day to see you listening to the podcast and fills me up with pure joy. Seriously.  See you on the ‘gram!

If Instagram and Facebook aren’t your jam, send me a good old fashioned email!  info@emilygoughcoaching.com


This is where it all starts. Your FREE foundational guide to understanding yourself in whole new ways that will re-frame and completely shift how you approach relationships.



Step into your strength. Reclaim your power. Allow yourself to be truly seen.

© 2023 emily gough | all rights reserved | Brand + website by madison kabrich

Create the kind of relationships that make your entire nervous system breathe a sigh of relief as you think to yourself, “this is what it’s supposed to feel like.”