Celebrate Yourself - It's Good For You!
I am happy to say last week's challenge was a HUGE SUCCESS! Last week's question was, What is ONE Thing you can do this week that seems like a big stretch, that would make you proud of yourself for even attempting it? I couldn't be happier for completing my stretch of writing my book in ONE week! Last Sunday night I was feeling nervous for myself and the two people who agreed to try this ONE week virtual book retreat with me. But there was no need for nerves, (although that may have helped get us moving), for each one of us had great success.
We were all armed with a clear understanding of what was important to us about writing our book and what we would get from writing our book. We had an outline of the project and a mockup of the book jacket cover to make it feel like the book was already here. And we had lots of tools to keep the voices of self-doubt quiet. We also had a plan to receive support to keep going. That really seemed to work. I wrote a book about my parents early lives up until the time they got married. It was great to connect with them to get details of the significant events in their lives and really understand their personal journeys. I finished my rough draft after 6 days and sent them the rough cut for their feedback. They loved it! Since they were the primary audience, that feels like success for me. And now I will edit it and see if I have their permission to share it with others. But the best part of the whole process was the experience of creating the book. I felt present and connected while writing and I feel powerful for completing something that felt like a real challenge and was something I had wanted to do for a long time.
It also felt great for me to support two other people to write their books. They both said that it was relatively easy because they had a structure, tools and support. When they are finished their editing, I hope they will share their creations with me. They both felt very empowered for doing it. I am thrilled for both of them and for myself.
Which leads me to this week's question. "What is ONE Thing you can do this week to celebrate yourself?" Whether you did a big stretch last week or not, take a moment to reflect on all the reasons you should feel good about yourself. Even if you tried something new and it didn't work the way you hoped, acknowledge yourself for trying and see what kind of learning you can extract from the experience. And then have fun thinking about doing something to celebrate yourself for the unique individual you are.
It's easy to be critical and hard on yourself. It can feel uncomfortable to praise yourself because that seems conceited. The irony is, the more you can acknowledge yourself, the less you need others' acknowledgement and approval. If you feel great about yourself, you don't need to brag to others and search for external approval. So celebrating yourself for the things you feel good about, frees you up from needing others to do that for you. Some ideas for celebrating yourself could include going out for a meal or drinks as a celebration. Or taking time to do an activity that you love, maybe hiking or dancing. It could be to spend some time in the sun reading a book. It could be writing an acknowledgment to yourself in your journal. Do something to reinforce your good feelings about yourself.
For me, I already had the celebration I was looking forward to while I worked so hard on my book. I was envisioning going out for a celebratory dinner with my parents after presenting them with the story I wrote about them. And that is what we did last night. We also celebrated my mom writing her book in one week because she volunteered herself for my experiment of being coached to write a book in one week. I felt extremely proud of both of us and thoroughly enjoyed that celebration. And I am planning another celebration for myself, which is to sit outside on my deck in the sun with a refreshing drink and read the book that I wrote, enjoying the fruits of my labour.
I don't think you can have too many celebrations, (if they're healthy celebrations). As Louise Hay, (known as one of the founders of the self-help movement), said, you should tell yourself daily "I approve of myself." She said 1000 times a day is not too much. So feel good about celebrating yourself this week!
And, as always, I would love to hear from you on what you will do this week. Feel free to share in the comments below, on Facebook or in our Weekly ONE Thing Facebook Group!