How to Celebrate Your Wins to Boost Motivation
A big part of increasing your motivation and feeling grateful is connected to celebrating your wins. And when it comes to mindset and working towards a big goal, being aware of and celebrating even the small wins, can take you a long way.
Tracking and celebrating wins promotes motivation, self confidence & gratitude
A study by The Harvard Business School looked at how everyday life inside organizations can influence people and their performance. Researchers designed and analyzed nearly 12,000 diary entries from 238 employees in seven companies to find that tracking achievements, even when small, played a big part in increasing motivation in the workplace.
Tracking and celebrating your small wins is a great way to gradually increase your sense of confidence. You are recording progress and becoming aware of how every little step does make a difference towards achieving that big goal. It can give you that feeling of excitement and gratitude towards your journey and yourself. You get to notice that your efforts do deliver results and thus boost your confidence in your skills, expertise, intuition, and thinking. It’s also helping your brain change its pattern from a fixed mindset, towards growth oriented thinking.
By celebrating your wins you are essentially REWARDING yourself. And let’s face it. As adults we are not usually rewarded anymore (with the exception of a hard-earned financial bonus or promotion). In fact, we kind of need to become our own cheerleaders and give ourselves golden stars pretty often. We are primed to work hard, run towards the big goal, and disregard all the small things that helps us move forward. You can’t reach the destination, if you don’t walk the path. And reaching that destination does get difficult when you’re not actively encouraging yourself, analyzing your progress and rewarding yourself for sticking to your goals.
“Our hunt for inner work life triggers led us to the progress principle. When we compared our research participants’ best and worst days (based on their overall mood, specific emotions, and motivation levels), we found that the most common event triggering a “best day” was any progress in the work by the individual or the team. The most common event triggering a “worst day” was a setback.” Source.
What happens when you don’t celebrate your wins
You’re probably feeling like the needle isn’t moving. Like you’ve done it all, but nothing seems to work. Like you’re at it for so long, you’re wondering if you’re ever going to see results. You might also feel a lack of energy and look at life through dark lenses. You might even be considering quitting while you’re at it. Sometimes this can also impact your clarity and feeling aligned to your mission or purpose. You might be putting a lot of work and effort, pushing through it all, in a hurry to achieve your objective. This leaves you less time to nurture your relationship and have a social life.
“If a person is motivated and happy at the end of the workday, it’s a good bet that he or she made some progress. If the person drags out of the office disengaged and joyless, a setback is most likely to blame.” Source.
Celebrating wins is important for every one of us, in all aspects of life.
Celebrating progress promotes mindfulness, living in the present and feeling happy about your life. As a coach, I have found this to be a common issue among entrepreneurs and remote workers. Also, it’s something I have been struggling with as well. I tend to focus on what needs to be done, and once I achieve a goal, I just move on to the next one, and thus I miss an opportunity to reward myself, record my progress which in return reduces my confidence and focus.
Action –> Result –> Feeling good –> Increased action –> Increased results
vs Action –> Result –> No celebration, no joy –> Reduced action –> Reduced/Infrequent results
How to celebrate your wins
Track your wins - we all have agendas, and calendars, and notebooks and notes on our phones. While most of us do a pretty good job tracking what we need to do, we often skip the mark when it comes to tracking our wins. In my own mindset practice I have found that it is very useful to make a note of the wins I am grateful for every single day. It can be eating healthy that day, spending time with my friends, achieving small tasks, publishing a blog post or signing a new client, making sales pitches, finishing a big project or saying yes to a great opportunity.
Share the good news - this is where an accountability partner, a supportive group or your favorite Facebook community can step in. Without sharing your good news, as small as they might be, you’re not really embracing the whole celebrating wins concept to the fullest. It also helps with your validation and encouragement, and it is possible that you might just find out there were other wins that you’ve overlooked.
Be aware of your inner dialogue & reactions - Take a moment to really consider how you react when you finish a project, how you reward yourself (if you do) for progress. If you’re not really doing it, it’s time to make a list of ways you’d like to reward yourself for making progress and pay attention to what you’re telling yourself after a small or a big win, and how your self-worth is impacting your reward choices.
Small wins can be celebrated with small actions: like buying yourself some really nice flowers, ordering your favorite dessert, listening to some good music, sleeping in, taking a break from work, taking a bath, meeting friends, going for a walk, or purchasing a small item (like a pair of earrings, a music album, a lipstick, an inspirational poster).
Big wins NEED significant celebrations, and not necessarily in terms of expenses, but in terms of enjoyment. Big wins imply long term effort, possibly prioritizing work over your social life and personal hobbies, so it is important for your self-confidence and feeling of worthiness going forward to create a happy, joyful, powerful memory around a specific milestone. My favorite way of celebrating big wins are traveling, taking my husband out for a yummy dinner, spending an entire afternoon with a friend doing nothing, investing in books, courses, or clothing, spending a day at the spa or crafting.
An even better way to celebrate your wins is by rewarding yourself with items or experiences that will empower you into following through your next goal (if you’re a runner and you’ve set a goal to run every day for one month, when you’ve achieved that goal, you could buy a pair of shoes that will make running even better).
Celebrating your wins is a great way to build positive and good habits. Not only that, but it will be a stepping stone into increasing your confidence and your self worth. I would love to hear from you, so let me know how you’re celebrating your wins in a comment below. That way all readers can benefit from your own story.