Dear Santa,

As a child I always dreamed of having a life where no one in my family would worry about money. A life where I could buy all the nice, shiny things I wanted and where I would live in a fancy home, with a beautiful garden, a loyal, loving husband and kids in tow.

Each year I have asked you for this. I have spent my whole life working hard towards it. But for some reason you never seemed to grant my wish. Was I asking too much of you?

I have nearly two degrees under my belt and live the hectic, unpredictable entrepreneur life. I have two beautiful children and no loving, loyal husband, and an apartment, not a dream home.

Every time I got close to something it seemed to be no longer in reach and not even possible.

I thought my life was a shambles until this year…

It seems there was a valid reason you have never granted this wish. Granting this wish would mean I would possibly miss what was important along the way.

I realised that I have been living the dreams of a very young, inexperienced girl who had no idea what life was about, and despite it being twenty or more years of setting this dream in stone, I have only now stopped, looked back and re-assessed.

I have been working away on a dream set by a teenager. A teenager has been telling me what to do. I am that teenager.

So, I sat down and had a firm chat with my teenager self, and this is what I said.

Let go of any picture-perfect dream, it was a nice thing to hold onto but holding onto it for the last twenty has meant you have forgotten how to sit back and appreciate the life you had and have now.

Nothing has ever been good enough for you and no moment was strong enough just to stop you in your tracks.

You ignored the fact you have two beautiful, healthy children, that your Mum survived cancer, that your whole family is still alive and that you finished a nursing degree, and started a new one. You even forgot how lucky you are to have your own business.

Let it go Nat. The end dream is only a pretty picture, one you made to help you feel more secure as a teenager. As an adult you can see life isn’t about perfection or aiming for it, it is for the small perfect moments in between.

Santa, I am a single mum of two beautiful children and an entrepreneur. As a parent and a business owner, I never pat myself on my back. I am consumed with guilt and failure about not being the person I wanted to be.

But I’ve now come to realise that you have already granted me my wish.

A wish for gratitude and reflection.

It is so important to take time out each day to be reflect and ensure that you practice gratitude. It’s not something that comes easy, especially when you are you own toughest critic.

Over time, I have learned to allow myself to stop and think how grateful I am for the small things in life that make the bigger things possible.

I’ve realised that taking time out of my busy days to stop and reflect is something that has become part of my daily routine. It’s almost habit now and not just another thing to add to the list.

You see, practicing gratitude helps me see things more clearly and perhaps make better decisions. Of course, there are some days that I find it harder than others but I find it just as rewarding.

Instead of wallowing in my own self- pity and fanciful dreams, I have come to realise that I have everything to be grateful for.

My family is healthy, and I have all the love in the world. My business is filled with the most amazing people and I have a super great circle of friends. I wake up and laugh, and I sleep in peace.

I couldn’t wish for anything more. Thank you for keeping my dream alive.

I know you’re a busy man but if I may be cheeky, can I ask for one more wish?

I would like to wish that my fellow entrepreneurs also find the gift of gratitude and time for reflection. It’s life changing and will be the making of any business owner, I’m totally convinced.

I hope you can help others live their dreams.

All the best, Santa. Merry Christmas!

Love your fellow, always being too hard on herself, entrepreneur.

Nataly x