Reaching a simple goal, a major milestone or accomplishing any pursuit should give you a moment to pause and rejoice. After all, not everyone can do what you can do. And even if they can, how many people will? Even if they do, how many will take a moment to enjoy completing an undertaking?
It’s all too common for us to set a goal and reach it and buckle down for the next thing on the list, whether it’s writing a book, landing a sale or a new client.
As the leader of a writer’s group, my job was to encourage writers to an agreed upon singular focus: getting published. I learned many valuable lessons while leading that devoted group, lessons about the rewards of perseverance, and the complete and total joy of holding your very own book in your hand with your name on it. Amazingly, I was just as proud of their accomplishments as I was my own. We cheered each other on through writer’s block, revisions, character development and patched story gaps.
Our group was together for over five years, but one particular moment stands out. When one of our novelists finished her manuscript, she invited us to join her in celebrating the momentous occasion.
If you’ve ever tried using MailChimp, you may know it isn’t all that user-friendly or intuitive. So when I finally “cracked the code” I took myself out to lunch at my favorite Asian establishment.
When I published my first book, my husband had flowers delivered to my day job which gave me a chance to talk about my writing and sell copies of my book to coworkers.
By recognizing our milestones we send a message to our brains that there is a beginning and an end to each project and that hard work pays off. Plus we get to bask in the feel-good period of well-deserved glory.
You’re worthy of reward.
In Julia Cameron book the Artists Way, she suggests making artist dates with ourselves. They can be those things that feed your soul. After accomplishing something, value yourself with a special treat like getting ice cream, buying yourself flowers, a meal, a little bling (little!) or indulging in a movie.
You can also invite loved ones and supporters to celebrate your accomplishments, making it an occasion. Every victory may not need to be a gala, but here are some ideas for marking the occasion.
- Keep a victory log. When you hit a day that is less than ideal or downright discouraging, nothing will pick up your spirits quite like a track record of victories!
- Send yourself a post card or congrats card and keep them in a scrapbook (next to your victory log!)
- Send out a press release to your personal friends and family,
- Have a photo shoot and keep a photo album of your celebrations.
- Make your favorite sweet treat and invite friends to share. I love sharing big moments with friends and loved ones over food.
- Buy a bottle of champagne (or a bottle of fizzy Kombucha if you’re health conscious!)
- Write a letter of thanks, a note or text to someone who helped you get a leg up
- Treat yourself to a spa day
- Go somewhere amazing for a night or week.
Celebrating your big breakthroughs and goals will give you something to look forward to when you begin your next endeavor.
What accomplishment are you most proud of? How did you celebrate? What are you currently working toward? We’d love to cheer you on. Let us hear from you in the comments below.