In the past year we have cancelled birthday parties, weddings, and graduation ceremonies. All the big events in life happened, we just didn’t get to throw the party. And man, did I miss it!
I love to celebrate! Birthdays are my favorite holiday. It is the one day that is all about you! It is a day to reflect back on the year. It is a day to look forward to another year ahead. And it’s the perfect reason to indulge in all your favorite treats.
My love of celebrating birthdays has carried over into the goals that I set. I plan little celebrations throughout the process. When I complete small steps along the way, I celebrate my progress. I don’t wait until the very end.
When you’re working hard on a goal you deserve to acknowledge the small wins along the way.
Think of it like school. We don’t wait until we graduate high school to celebrate. We celebrate the end of every year! We have kindergarten graduation. We have middle school transition ceremonies. And don’t forget the 100 days till the end of school parties. Your goal journey deserves the same honor!
Plus there is an added bonus to all these celebrations (besides an excuse to eat cupcakes and ice cream). When we celebrate the small steps along the way we are making a purposeful pause and acknowledging the work we have done. We are giving ourselves credit for the progress we are making. That is often the encouragement we need to keep going.
When do I celebrate my progress?
Celebrate the small steps.
Take a moment to acknowledge accomplishing the little things along the way. Think of all the tasks you would put on your to do list to get closer to accomplishing your goal. Identify the moments along the way that feel like the completion of a school year. Plan a celebration for each of these moments.
If you’ve set a goal to do something for 30 days, celebrate when you hit the half way point.
If you are working on earning a degree, plan a small way to celebrate the completion of each class.
Celebrate the big steps.
When you get to the end you should definitely celebrate! When you set a big dream goal, often the goal itself is the celebration. After spending 10 years dreaming of the trip, getting on the plane to Italy was in many ways a celebration in and of itself! Your big dream goal may be similar. A separate celebration isn’t always needed.
If you’re working on earning a degree, throw a party when you get that diploma.
You reach day 30 of eating healthy, treat yourself to a pedicure to celebrate your commitment.
Celebrating does not have to be expensive. It should be a little indulgent (that’s kinda the point).
Here are five of my favorite ways to celebrate,
including one that is always free and easy!
- Activity – go do something. Visit a place you’ve never been to and always wanted to. It could be local, that local park you’ve driven by a dozen times but never stopped at. Or it could be a tropical vacation (if it’s Bali, call me to join you!)
- Wish List – gift yourself something you’ve always wanted. I like to keep a Pinterest board of my wish list items. Some are pricey, some are very affordable.
- Self-Care – pamper yourself. Grabbing my favorite book and going to the salon to get a pedicure is my favorite way to relax and pamper myself when I have checked off a long to-do list.
- Share – tell the world or tell a few people what you’ve done. Who doesn’t love the resounding virtual applause you get when you update your LinkedIn profile with that fancy new job title? Brag on yourself, don’t be shy!
- Mark the occasion – a photo, special item, something to remind you of the accomplishment when you see it. This is great for those midway celebrations. Anytime you see it, it reminds you of everything you have already done and inspires you to keep going!
Take a look at what you’re working on right now. Decide when and how you will celebrate. Write it down on a post it note and put in on your fridge or in your planner. When the day comes, go do it! We all deserve to celebrate our big and small progress!