As my birthday is fast approaching (March 23), I’ve started to think about how I’d like to celebrate the best year of my life so far. Last year I didn’t really do anything except have a small, yet lovely, impromptu get-together at a local hookah bar, as I was very much focused on preparing for a huge speaking gig. Thankfully, the presentation was very well-received, but by the time I was able to come up for air, it was already May and the time to celebrate had passed. This year, however, with the recent launch of my website, I’m actually busier than I was last year. I’ve come to realize that if celebrating is important to me - and it is - I need to make it a non-negotiable and just put on my calendar (btw, nothing is real for me unless I’ve put it on there).
Some may argue that celebrating yourself and your accomplishments is a frivolous and egotistical act. I’m sure that in a few cases that could be true, but the kind of celebration I’m referring to here is based on expressing love and humble gratitude.
Whether it’s patting myself on the back for small victories such as completing a tough workout or “killing it” in an high-pressure/high-profile meeting, I believe that celebrating our successes is a great habit to cultivate and is actually essential to creating more opportunities for success in our lives. The Law of Attraction says, “that which is like unto itself is drawn.” Another way of thinking about this is that whatever you focus on expands. While fixating on the negative attracts more negative experiences to you, enjoying and “milking" the positive experiences attracts more of that to you. What’s more, when celebrations are centered around being thankful - for the people that have played supportive roles in our success, resources available to us, and our own personal strengths and gifts - they are even more powerful in their ability to attract additional positive, gratitude inducing experiences into our lives.
As an example of really "milking" a win, I have a story about my year in fantasy football. I’m in a league with one other woman and eight men. This is my third year, and before this I've never played. The beginning of my season was full of drama and a string of losses. Being a competitive person, I was frustrated and humiliated by my sad performance. Somehow, I found the determination and focus to climb out of that hole and make it to the playoffs. Before I knew it, I was in the finals, and ended up beating the highest scoring team of the season to win the league. I could hardly believe it. Surprised, delighted, and so very grateful for my win, the drama and fun of the season, my terrific league-mates, and a top-notch league commissioner, I took it upon myself to throw my own victory/superbowl party (at a generous friend’s place), complete with decorations, a soul-food buffet, and goodie bags. I even bought a new dress to wear. People thought I was crazy, but I really didn’t care! I had a blast putting everything together, playing hostess, and of course, publicly accepting the highly coveted “Johnson Cup" as the second woman to reign victorious in a male-dominated league. Everyone else had a good time as well (I think - ha!). I continued to celebrate by paying it forward and donating the money I had won to the House of Ruth, a local DC non-profit, dedicated to ending homelessness and life-long abuse by helping women, children and families. I could barely put myself to bed that night because I was buzzing with so much joy!
So, whether you published your first book or just did something outside of your comfort zone like attending your first swing-dancing class when you have two left feet, be sure to celebrate yourself. You don't have to throw yourself a big party like I did (I'm a bit of an extrovert), but do something to mark the occasion that suits you and tells the universe, without any doubt, "more, please"! It is sure to pay dividends in the future.
And here’s to another great season of fantasy football; hopefully I’ve generated enough good vibes to fuel another successful run. And, I’m not going to lie, it felt AMAZING to beat those guys!
Now I want to hear from you. Leave a comment below and let me know what you're celebrating right now. Do you make sure to celebrate the small stuff as well as the big moments? And what are your favorite ways to celebrate?
Lots of love,
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