While I have been an entrepreneur for over a decade, it is just something I chose to do, not anything I took time out to recognize, let alone be in celebration. Not until, I listened to a colleague and friend whom I admire, excitedly share about the day she went into business for herself and what she planned to do to acknowledge this fact. The celebration of the small stuff takes practice. Notice, that I made it small when it actually is a pretty big deal.
The celebration of the small stuff takes practice. Notice, that I made it small when it actually is a pretty big deal. The fact that I had never recognized it anywhere in my life is under investigation because it was a clue to me that I had glossed over quite a bit in my life and I needed to look closer.
When she shared her news with me, it landed in my heart funny. How come I had no idea what that was for me? I felt sorry for myself. I missed it and the truth is I often did. Do you have those moments when you realize a part of your life just goes by unnoticed?
I realized that this had become my normal. Go after the achievements, but never quite celebrate them. On to the next thing.
Only this time, it was such a weight in my heart that, I opened a calendar. I went back to the year, I had to feel my way to the month, but the day just wouldn’t appear. I just sat there staring at the screen, hoping that the answer would just pop out. I felt like it was somewhere in the middle, but actually, I didn’t know.
To reclaim the opportunity to celebrate my accomplishment in my business, I just picked a day. I made it official: August 15, 2005. This is the day, the hubs and I went to the courthouse and registered our business together all proper like. I went into business for myself right after 9/11 in 2001 in New York City, but the date is a blur for me.
I recorded, August 15, 2005, on my calendar (with forever reminders) to acknowledge that I am DOING this, to register in my brain and in my heart that I am worthy of seeing myself.
Society dictates and my parents’ mandate was that I was to strive for more, be better, work two to three times harder in order to get ahead. Celebrate when you get to the finish line, only it keeps getting moved, like the elusive carrot. The moment of ‘resting on your laurels’ never comes, you can’t let yourself get a big head.
You must stay humble, grounded, modest and down to Earth, right? ‘Celebration’ is for birthdays and weddings. Celebrate your business? Who do you think you are?! At least, this was the unchecked message in my head.
It is ok to be humble about what you have been able to go around and get through or over rather than celebrate the small (read: cumulative) stuff.
I had no problem celebrating my clients, my husband or my friends in the smallest or the largest of their accomplishments. And because I had not thrown the confetti for myself, it was difficult to accept praise without telling a joke to deflect the awesomeness that was being bestowed upon me or the thing I accomplished. Remember this, in receiving ANYTHING: you bless the giver with the grace in which you receive.
As a whole, most of us are self-effacing, lest we celebrate out loud about who we are and what we have accomplished. We are here to experience, to BE and to be happy. Playing small so others won’t think we are conceited is for the birds. Tell the voice in your head or the friend that wants to keep you small to kick rocks.
How can you work on your happy if you are more concerned about what others think of you rather than how you feel? That is located in ‘Neverland.’ Draw a line in the sand, take a stand and begin to record the small victories NOW. They are the foundation for the larger ones. It builds momentum and opportunities to feel good a lot and often.
Declare with me: From this moment forward, I ____________ WILL acknowledge all of my experiences, so that I may truly understand the importance of celebrating me: just ‘cuz.