Do You Wait Until the End to Celebrate?
It’s easy to celebrate at the end of a project or a milestone, it feels natural, timely & right. And how do you get there when it’s a big project, like looking for your next best move – updating your resume, writing a professional bio, networking, applying to new roles – it can take 6 months to a year before you land your dream role.
How do you keep going until the celebration? Actually, celebrating mini-milestones along the way is scientifically proven to keep you on track to your north star!
Celebration Setting – its a real thing!
Let’s break it down in a doable checklist – I love a bulleted, time-bound list!
There are 3 big areas I like to celebrate:
- Celebrate Effort
- Celebrate Attainment
- Celebrate Failure
Let’s start with Effort – this is sometimes the hardest one because it requires you to take action! In the face of fear, overwhelm, and unknown anxiety, it can be paralyzing to move toward your goal. Back to looking for a new role – maybe you’ve been at your current company for over a decade, and you know you want a new challenge, but you’re not sure you really want to make a move.
Remember “Mother May I?” You had to ask the person who was “it” if you could move forward in the game. Sometimes it was a tiny step, a skip, or a giant jump! And you just did the next command she called out, you either made progress towards her or you got sent back to the starting line – sometimes more than once, haha. But, you know what we didn’t do? We didn’t quit. Even when we got sent back to the starting line, maybe we stomped or screamed or cried (we were 8) but we kept playing.
When you are feeling like you keep getting sent back to the starting line, remember the actions you’ve already taken, and the lessons you’ve learned & keep going! And celebrate the Effort you put out into the world, maybe get a massage, change your scenery for work, or enjoy an hour of meditation and quietude. If you frame these up as celebratory events tied to your weeks’ worth of effort, it will help you keep asking “Mother May I?”.
The most common reward is based on actual goal attainment. We are programmed to celebrate once we achieve something – a promotion, a new client or contract, or a new job. But these are all big, long-term goals, how do you create short-term attainable celebration points along the journey?
Set Attainment goals when you start a project. Think of that new role or a new client you want. Make daily visualization a goal, can you visualize daily for a week? Even making this a “check the box daily” activity will give your brain tiny drops of dopamine. This is the kickstart to keep going.
At the end of your 7-day visualization streak, what else can you add to sweeten the pot? Maybe its a luxurious tub soak with a Lush bath bomb long enough to watch a movie on Netflix with a local latte (this might be my fave!) but you come up with yours!
Finally, let’s address Failure celebrations. What’s your view on Failure – do you avoid it at all costs, approach it cautiously or fully embrace it? What I’ve learned about innovation is the road to a successful anything is littered with failed attempts.
When a reporter once asked Thomas Edison, “How did it feel to fail 1,000 times?” Edison replied, “I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.”
And what he learned along the way also led to many other inventions, like the telephone, the telegraph, the motion picture camera, and the phonograph.
If you are on the journey to something new, a new look, a new job, or a new client – plan to celebrate the mini-failures along the way! That red lipstick you tried on in the store looks orange when you get home?! Mix it with another color & celebrate by trying red lipstick!
That shiny, new resume that took you hours to write but you’ve gotten 10 rejection emails so far?! Celebrate those 10+ action steps it took to get there with 10 minutes of dancing to Reggae Lou live from Key West!
Those 5 potential client calls – not a fit? Celebrate 5 people closer to the one who will be the perfect fit! My dad was a military man and they’d say “That’s a 5 by 5, thumbs up!” This means loud & clear, confirmed. When you get this, you are on the right path to success. What are 5 micro-celebrations you can do?
Fit for Failure celebrations will make the path to your goal at least fun. The human brain thrives on novelty, so try something new today that celebrates all the Effort & Failure on your way to Attainment. And if you get stuck & want a guide for your ride – hire a business/life coach!
If you’re ready to upgrade your thoughts, you can book a call with me here: