I can’t recall all my personal victories I let pass without my acknowledging of them.
I didn’t keep track. I didn’t even count.
I never did.
For most of my life, I thought the only thing worth celebrating was the attainment of the ultimate goal. All the preluding notes toward the grand orchestral finish didn’t warrant any mention, recognition, or merit. As long as the big prize is still yet to be coveted, there’s no reason to celebrate.
Three things make someone refuse to celebrate their small victories:
First is the curse of perfectionism. It’s not the end goal yet. It’s not the ultimate prize. It’s not perfect yet. Flaws and imperfection still reside. Therefore, I will not celebrate.
Second is detachment from the present. My past can never be forgiven. My future is still lightyears away. I need my future to erase my past. Therefore, I will not celebrate.
Third is the lack of self-love. Who am I? I’m not worthy. I don’t deserve it. I’m just a nobody. Therefore, I will not celebrate.
That’s why I got nowhere. That’s why I accomplished nothing. I always told myself I couldn’t celebrate, not giving myself credit for even the littlest accomplishment I achieved. All that mattered to me was the BIG things.
But I was wrong.
Sometimes, a small step in the right direction can require as much as courage and faith as doing something big. Without taking small, tiny steps, a toddler could not learn to walk. Without small bricks put on top of each other, there would not be a house. Without the small seeds and saplings, a forest would not be decorated with luscious trees.
There are three reasons you should celebrate your small victories:
First, celebrating your small victories reinforces to your mind that you are making progress. When your mind sees progress, it tells you to keep on going.
Second, celebrating your small victories gives happiness. Happiness from the past is gone. Happiness from the future is uncertain. There’s no place to find it except in the present so you better learn how to celebrate your small accomplishments.
Third, and the most important of all, if you don’t celebrate yourself then how do you expect others to do the same?
I didn’t celebrate that time I first lifted a 45 pound dumbbell, not even that time I began seeing non-fiction books in a different light, or even that time I first publicly shared a poem I wrote. But it’s all in the past and I learned my lesson then. There’s no way in hell I wouldn’t celebrate my self-published book Walden and Hyde (and Other Short Stories). It’s only the prelude to my upcoming novel but it is still a victory nonetheless.
Earlier this week, I asked one of my friends to join me in my little celebration of Walden and Hyde. We had coffee in the Starbucks where I wrote most of the book. A few days later, we went back; he to celebrate his new freedom (he quit his job to start a new career) and I (still elated) to continue my previous celebration. We watched Jim Carrey's commencement address at the 2014 MUM graduation, a fantastic way to commemorate our two different victories. Small each of them may appear to be, but a victory is still a victory.
I believe that @@life will not give us big things until we learn to appreciate the small things.@@ Cheers to small victories!
What about you? Do you even celebrate your small victories? Think about it.
If you haven't seen it yet, here's Jim Carrey's speech:
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