At this time of the year as a child you live for the presents. I remember growing up, I was always the first one up Christmas morning. I would be so excited to see what presents were under the tree that morning. I’m sure many of you could relate, but as I’ve aged (yes, I’m an ancient 26 now!), I’ve realized a shift for me. The joy no longer is in the presents, but rather the presence of those I love. As all my cousins have grown and some are now married and spread all over the country, this is the one time each year I get to see most of them. I value that presence with family.

Maybe you’re not blessed with a supporting family that you’re looking forward to seeing this Christmas, but make it a point surround yourself with people who’s presence improve your life. Whether that’s at Christmas or just everyday. Those we surround ourselves with will greatly affect who we are and what we do. If you want to be more positive, be in the presence of positive people. If you want to eat better, make it a point to be in the presence of physically healthy people. As kids we learn this principle, but I think we forget it as adults: You will become like those you are around. This Christmas and in this new year, make it a priority to be in the presence of those that improve your life.

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