This week I came to a realization. It found me in the form of a statement delivered to me by a colleague. It is a phrase I have heard many times in the past, and it guided me to the paramount understanding that we have to find the significance in celebrating our small victories.
I was having a conversation with a colleague of mine about life goals. She had read my last post about how to make our new year resolutions stick and we were talking about our plans for 2016. I mentioned to her the long laundry list of things I am hoping for, the things that are “wrong” in my life and I even told her some of the plans I had. After my admittedly long-winded monologue about all of the things that I deem as “fixable” in my life, she stared at me and asked, “Well, what are you happy about?”.
The question perplexed me, because I thought we were having a conversation about what we want to change going forward, not what we are happy about from the past or even in the present. I sense she noticed my confusion, and so she added, “I remember when you were just starting this whole thing, and you have made a lot of progress. You should remember that.”
That stuck with me. The last part of her comment rang in my head like a familiar tune. I thought back and realized that this is not the first time I have heard someone say that exact phrase to me. You have made a lot of progress, and you should remember that. My mother, father, cousin, significant other and even my best friends have all said that to me in the course of our many conversations. As I started to realize this, I then looked inward and asked, Why do you do that?
Anyone who is a regular reader of this blog, knows that I am not afraid to ask myself tough questions in the name of self discovery. I think we should all be willing to do this, if we ever want to get better and find a happy life. So as I thought about the answer to my question, and I came to the conclusion that I have not found the beauty in celebrating my small victories. Not only that, I don’t usually stop to reflect on any victories. Sure, I may in the moment realize that I landed that client I really wanted, or that I’ve lost that little bit of weight. But by the next day, it is like it didn’t happen, because i’m on to the next.
Then I realized that this must make me look strange to other people, who look at things from the outside, who can see that I am no longer that college student doing crappy internships just to get her foot in the door. I am now a successful business owner, and wow isn’t that an accomplishment? Sure it’s not perfect (my goodness could I tell you how unperfect it is) BUT….I have progressed…I have made positive strides towards my ultimate goals in life…and I have to remember that.
That situation inspired me to write this post, because it is my hope that if you are making this mistake, you can consider why you are doing it too. To me, there is great power in giving your small wins the attention and recognition they deserve. I see that now.
Acknowledging your Small Victories Keeps You Motivated
Sometimes the day to day of running a business or trying to grow your career can drain your motivation. What most people don’t seem to tell you is that getting that dream job/starting that business does not equal immediate happiness. Sure, a goal has been met and so we’ll be happy about it initially. But the grunt work that goes into moving up the ladder at your job or generating more profits for your business can become monotonous. For me, monotony ruins my motivation. But if I acknowledged that earlier in the week I made my goal of finishing a video project, or that I pushed through all my paperwork, that would help to propel me forward. If we recognize the small things we are able to get done, it will motivate us to keep pushing forward to the higher goal.
Remembering Where you Came From Boosts Your Confidence
Confidence is sometimes the main thing that separates women from their male counterparts. It is has been shown in studies, that women have a tendency to think they are less qualified while men do the opposite. We should learn from that, but also try to remember that where we are today does not determine where we will be tomorrow. If we remember where we were a month, 6 months, even a year ago…we can begin to see that we are always learning and changing. We are always moving towards our goals. If you know you have gotten better in the past, then it is safe to assume you will get better in the future. This should boost your confidence in anything you do!
Acknowledging your Small Victories Keeps You Grateful
This may be the most important of all. It makes me think of a quote I saw on instagram recently.
“A Grateful Heart is a magnet for miracles”
No matter what happens in our life, I think it’s important to remember that there will always be people doing better than us and that things could always be worse. Everything that happens, including our downfalls are lessons to be learned. We should be grateful that we are getting the chance to learn them. We should be grateful for this thing that we call life, with all of it’s experiences and journeys. Remaining grateful through it all will kill our tendency to compare ourselves to others. That is important as comparison is the killer of dreams. This can be difficult to do, but I believe gratidude is a virtue the same as patience. Let’s try our best to be grateful today, this month, this year and all of the years to come.
I hope I have made a good case for you! Our victories, small and large deserve attention and acknowledgment. Life is meant to be experienced, and while that does include the negative stuff too, we need to give our good times more glory. I hope you think about that as you go off into this weekend and next week. You are making progress, and you have remember that!
Thank you for reading as always, I am looking forward to reading your comments below. Are you guilty of glazing over your small victories? Until next time 🙂