Ending the year with the Jar of Awesome

Author: Dr. Michelle Durkin on 22 December 2020

Every year around New Year's Day I review my year and take time to celebrate the “little things”. Many of you have read my Jar of Awesome from previous years but for those of you who haven’t here’s a little background.

The jar of awesome is a simple task that I first heard about listening to a podcast by Tim Ferriss. It is based on the idea that we often fail to recognize or celebrate the really cool or smaller accomplishments in our lives. Too often we focus on what is going wrong versus what is going right. 

Since 2020 isn't over yet I'm rewinding a little bit here to 2019. It had the theme of moving forward for me. Many changes, many challenges, many lessons. Yet even with all of the disruption, many things to be grateful for. Sounds a little too similar to this year doesn't it?

Even though it seems so long ago now, here’s my list for 2019 in the random order that I pulled them:

  • letter from a patient – “Dear Michelle, I just HAVE to share this with you because of the journey I’ve been on of which you’ve been such a BIG part for several years…I don’t know where this will end up. But, I DO KNOW that I am changing, learning, growing, erring, forgiving, and challenging old thinking. YOU have made a difference in my journey. I wanted you to know.” What a reminder that even when you think you’re not really making an impact, you really are making an impact, just with one little ripple.
  • Toronto Distillery district Christmas market for the 1st time; also eating oysters on the ½ shell for the 1st time; thought there would be a lot more 1sts with this person but it just wasn’t meant to be.
  • Ripley’s Aquarium; reminder that enjoying kid activities as an adult keeps you young at heart
  • new garage door; I love being able to park my car inside. It’s such a small thing that brings me an insane amount of happiness.
  • walking & biking to work
  • power dating month; I mean if you're going to do something, why not do it 100%?
  • FLT in Toronto with Daralyn, Tasha, and Malisa; when you go to a scotch bar for the first time, go with Daralyn 🙂
  • OAND with Daralyn, Robin, Katie & Mike; learning, gym time, and a traditional Japanese meal. Love this yearly event to connect with friends & colleagues.
  • breakfast with Jenn to pick up her BIA; great to see a friend and have a good chat, even if it's just for a short meal. 
  • Curling potlucks; good food and good people - Kim, Jeff, and Brent
  • AARM San Diego; learning, laughing, Padres ball park, trolley tour, my birthday in little Italy, and skull ferns. Love ya Malisa!
  • Office despacho ceremony with Patchamama's Wellness Centre for the Healing Arts
  • hiking Rock Dunder with Chris, Jill, and mom
  • Buying my house! I changed my perspective and ended up buying my forever house now. 
  • visit with Uncle Pat & Aunt Mary
  • Potter Settlement Wines with Andrea V; great day, great stories, great wine.
  • changes at the office; I feel like I am moving forward with a great team, with people who understand my crazy and accept it, with people who allow me to make mistakes so that I can grow. I only hope they feel the same way. Thank-you Daralyn, Tasha, Jenn, Tracey, Gretchen, and Scott.
  • Hawaii Doc Talks year 2, the Big Island; this is my kind of tradition
  • best card ever: “Once again, Aunt Michelle going away on another fun adventure without me, Hah! Sike! I hope you know that I know it’s for work right? Anyway I still love you even though you’re leaving me in stinkin Belleville again. Moving on…I hope you have the time of your life in San Diego! Send me a post card! Love Tessa”; I am so proud to be her aunt and I hope she learns a little bit about being adventurous from me.
  • Uncle Ron and Aunt Cathy’s 50th wedding anniversary; it’s not that often, especially in today’s world, that you get to witness an amazing milestone like that.
  • spa day on my own at the Wakefield Inn; I never realized how hard it was to pamper myself
  • summer visit to Kitchener/Cambridge; reconnecting with an old friend and time with family
  • birth of 2 nieces; Sophia & Maeve
  • golf invite to Black Bear Ridge and winning $20 x2; will the streak continue in 2020? A reminder that we all have handicaps, it doesn’t mean we can’t succeed. 
  • thank-you card: “Dear Dr. Durkin, Thank-you for sponsoring me to play hockey this season
  • Christmas card from a patient: “Thank-you for helping me manage my health and well-being. You give me the security I need to be the best holistic person I can be.” 
  • date pic at the Aquatarium; what’s with dates at aquariums?
  • dinner at the Blumen Bistro with Carl & Nancy; I have been wanting to go there for years and finally had the chance. I almost said no but this was my year to say yes more often and I’m really glad I did.
  • thank-you card from a patient’s wife after he passed from cancer
  • the best BIA reading I have ever had; a reminder that I am doing really good job at taking care of myself. Thank-you to everyone who is on my wellness team!

Again whenever I go back and read this list it reminds me that there is a lot more good going on in your life than bad. And that even “the bad” is not really that bad and something you can move on from. All you have to do is choose. 

Even with the year we have had I am optimistic that when I read my Jar of Awesome for 2020 it will end up having more highlights than I would have originally thought.

I will leave you this quote as we soon move out of the challenges of 2020 and into 2021:

Not every day is a good day, live anyway.

Not everyone tells the truth, trust anyway.

Not everyone will love you back, love anyway.

Not every game will be fair, play anyway.

I hope all of you continue to live, trust, love and play. Happy Holidays everyone!

HOLIDAY CLOSURE: Please be reminded that QNC will be closed from Thursday Dec 24th at noon until Monday January 4th at 10 am.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Do you like these posts? Sign up for Dr. Durkin's Apple a Day ....

Apple A Day is where you can find small, digestible, practical action steps to help you feel your best, one apple at a time.

Apple a Day

Quinte Naturopathic Centre

173 Church Street

Belleville, ON K8N 3C1



Hours of Operation:

Monday 10am - 7pm

Tuesday 9am - 6pm

Wednesday 9am - 6pm

Thursday 9am - 6pm

Friday 9am - 2pm


NOTE: Our building is not wheelchair accessible