The Gift of Rituals

Your-Communication-Connection-Speaker-Colette-CarlsonRituals rock. This from a motivational speaker who in prior years would be singing a different tune. Let me provide some context.

Ever since I can remember my family immediately followed up singing the traditional birthday song with an edited version (sung to the same tune). “How old are you? How old are you? Today is your birthday. How old are you?” As the honoree you were now charged with singing your current age. “I am XX years old……I am xx years old…” You get it.

As a very young child being stared down by a table of relatives, it often felt embarrassing. As a teenager, humiliating (just ask my own daughters!). But the birthday celebration would come to a dead stop until the song was sung. No one was excused. You learned to blurt it out before the candles melted into your cake.

When I finally left home after college thinking I had graduated from this tradition, I was otherwise educated. When the song traveled across the phone lines, I still rolled my eyes, but seemed to mind a little less.

Last Friday when my Father (86) and Mother (76) sang to me yet again, my eyes didn’t roll as they were filled with tears of joy. I sang loud and proud. Rituals rock.

What’s yours?


Step into the Truth Booth, improve your life, and laugh along the way with funny motivational speaker Colette Carlson. How did she go from emotional coward and the Pizza Delivery’s favorite customer to #1 sales producer for sales legend Tom Hopkins and Brian Tracy, featured in Success Magazine, a 50 lb. weight loss, and inspiring audiences at Microsoft, Accenture, Pepsi, Boeing, and organizations worldwide? Visit her at or call 760-230-1212.

Colette founded Speak Your Truth, Inc. to share her success systems and inspire others to Think It! Speak It! Live It! Her tools and takeaways create authentic, long-lasting change in every aspect of your life. With a MA in human behavior, a successful business and 2 teenage daughters, Colette provides a unique combination of education, research, real-life experience, and heartfelt humor to motivate you with her high content programs. Improve your Communication Skills, Work-Life Balance, Sales, Leadership, Assertiveness, Negotiation…all wrapped in the genuine power of Speaking Your Truth.

Did you enjoy this post? Just jot down your email and we'll keep you up-to-date with all of our motivation and entertainment.

Delivered by FeedBurner


  1. Sniff. Sniff. Who’s cutting onions?

    Loved this post Colette, and it made me cry. Rituals do rock. I watched the boy scouts go through a ritual recently – as they graduated to a higher level. What I prejudged as another boring thing to do – turned out to be anything but. The sacredness – the honor – the pride on the parents’  faces -and the younger boys watching with solemn faces, waiting for their turn. Absolutely priceless. Rituals do rock.

    As I’m reading your post, I’m realizing with great sadness that we do not have one ritual in our little family of three. Not a single one. (Other than Santa, Easter Bunny, birthday, etc., and those shouldn’t count.) But I’m smiling because pretty soon, that won’t be true anymore. I’m off to create some rituals that my son will remember for the rest of his life.

    Thanks for reminding this motivational speaker what life is really all about. Brilliant my wickedly smart and witty friend. Brilliant.


  2. What a lovely thing to share, Colettte!  It started me thinking about what our rituals were growing up and which ones my husband and I have continued with our 2 boys. Ummmm, Crossing state lines in the car on any road trip would be a tripwire for a chorus of the Loony Toons theme song!!  Doesn’t bring a tear but it’s very dear to our hearts!  Time for another road trip!

  3. I LOVE this post, Colette!  And just like our fellow motivational speakers, I too got to thinking about our rituals in our family.  My little Hanna came to be a part of family recently and I IMMEDIATELY started the ritual of getting some mango sorbet every time she comes over to visit. She LOVES that ritual!!!  Thanks for reminding me of how important this is!

  4. Wonderful post Colette! Thank you for getting me to think about and appreciate anew the rituals we have… my kids singing and saying grace before meals… walking the dogs in the late afternoon… family meetings over ice-cream…

Speak Your Mind