How do you feel when you achieve something challenging you purposefully set out to do? I’m hoping your answer is something like proud, confident, or empowered! But how often do you feel you’ve really achieved something that is worth celebrating? If you’re reading this, I’m going to say not very often at all.
It’s true that opportunities to achieve big goals like buying a home or securing your dream job, might not come around very often, but what if you’re missing out on daily opportunities to boost your self-esteem and generally feel great about yourself?
Because the truth is, most of us ignore daily opportunities to help ourselves feel more confident and kill any small bud of hope in boosting our self esteem we might have whilst we do it.
And it's likely because we're running on auto-pilot, rushing from one thing to the next, not stopping to appreciate us or our achievements because we either don't recognise them as wins or don't make the time to make a big deal out of them. Or worse, we know what we've done today is worth a pat on the back but we talk ourselves out of it, telling ourselves 'Really, I shouldn't make such a big deal out of it' or 'No one will be interested in something that small, even if it does mean something to me'.
But there's one small thing you can do everyday to change that confidence self-sabotage. And it's really is this simple - you need to PAUSE. You need to pause and make a conscious effort to celebrate your daily wins no matter how small they are. That might be with other people or even just with yourself but when you give your achievements the recognition they deserve you'll find out pretty quickly that it'll do wonders for your self-confidence
I know it isn't easy - our busy day to day lives can completely eclipse those smaller wins sending them flying under the radar. However whether you realise it or not, every single day, there will be things you set out to achieve, and when they happen, those small wins deserve as much celebration as the big ones!
So in order to start celebrating those achievements you need to start noticing what they are! Those smaller goals might look something like:
Finishing work on time
Only putting healthy food in your trolley
Planning your next getaway
Applying for a new job
Starting your next blog post
Not getting involved in that negative situation
Saving money each month
Getting 8 hours sleep a night
Finishing that level on your game or chapter of your book
Creating a dating profile
Trying out a new recipe
Whether they’re big or small, having goals is healthy, they help you to learn new things, grow your confidence, understand what’s important to you and ultimately bring you happiness. But if you don’t stop to celebrate those achievements you could end up on a never-ending hamster wheel chasing dream after dream, without ever feeling content.
And I’m just as guilty of this. When I bought my first apartment a few years ago, I didn’t stop to acknowledge that huge accomplishment. It had taken me years to save a deposit to finally own my own home, but there was never that ‘Hooray I did it!’ moment, it was simply ‘Right, I better start saving for a house next’. And looking back it is so sad that I didn’t take the time to celebrate a big win which was something I had worked so hard for. So I know there must be hundreds of smaller wins I've not even acknowledged!
And I bet one thing we all don’t do enough is celebrating our failures* and the fact we had the courage to even try attempting that challenging task in the first place. It takes real guts and self-belief to put yourself out there and take on something you know might not be within your reach. So, on the occasions things don’t quite go to plan, remember to stop and appreciate how brave you were to take that risk in the first place.
So it's time to make a change, so you can feel the change within you
From successfully navigating that tricky conversation at work to running that marathon, it’s time you started pausing to acknowledge both the big and the small wins. You’ll know from my previous post that humans are selfish so if you don’t shout about your successes who else will?
So, I want you to make one small tweak to your daily life - I want you to commit to recognising and celebrating every little thing you achieve each day. That could be:
Writing it down - spend 15 minutes each evening writing down every little win you’ve had throughout the day. Let’s make getting 8 hours sleep an achievement!
Telling, or even better, showing people! Post a picture of the room you finally managed to paint or take those baked cakes you’re proud of into the office to share (obviously post covid!)
Making ‘celebrating me’ moments a ‘thing’ – encourage your girlfriends to share their own small wins each day via your group chat. Let’s keep lifting each other up!
Rewarding yourself – Every time you’ve achieved a small win, remember to reward yourself (Maybe a hot chocolate from your favourite café or finally buying those new shoes you’ve been eyeing up).
However you choose to celebrate your successes is up to you, just remember to do it often so it becomes second nature (I now celebrate putting those cookies/doughnuts/ice creams back on the shelf when they’ve mysteriously ended up in my trolley…).
By simply acknowledging that you’ve successfully followed through on something you wanted to do, you’ll begin to value your worth and appreciate your abilities so much more. And when you add up all those small wins, you’ll start to feel that all important rise in your self-confidence as you realise you’re winning at so many things in life!
Always remember: recognising your efforts and achievements isn’t selfish, it’s necessary to stand tall and be proud of who you are. It really is time you started celebrating you xx
*To flag, I don’t believe in ‘failures’ I believe it’s just feedback on how to grow, learn and become even better. Remember this, Thomas Edison, the lightbulb inventor, took 10,000 attempts to create that glowing bulb. He is famous for saying ‘I have not failed, I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work’.
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