A few weeks ago I hit 100 followers on Instagram.
This week someone took the time to leave a comment on my blog.
Not in a ‘take myself out for a lobster dinner’ kind of way but more of a ‘dance around your bedroom and hope your neighbour isn’t watching’ type of celebration!
Most people wouldn’t celebrate any of these things.
I’m not most people.
Some people might even laugh at me for celebrating those things.
That’s okay too.
The joke might be on them in the long run.
Because guess what?
All that dancing around my bedroom to ‘This is Me’ from The Greatest Showman got me thinking about the many reasons why we need to celebrate the small wins in life.
And today we’re going to rock it out to 11 of my favourites!
Let’s do this!
1. It makes reaching that end goal all the sweeter
If we don’t stop to celebrate the small wins, guess what happens? We achieve our goal, climb up onto the winner’s podium, have that gold medal placed around our neck and then we think to ourselves ‘ok great, now what?’ In our mind, we’re already onto the next goal. But, if we celebrate the small wins as they come along, obtaining that end goal is all the more meaningful because we’ve been fully present with every step it took to get us there.
2. It shows us how far we’ve come
Each small win is a marker. When we celebrate that small win and we proudly put that marker in the sand, we turn and look behind us to see all the other markers that got us to this point. Those small wins serve as frequent reminders of how much we’re learning and growing.
3. We’re happier for it
Which would you rather be — the hare who sprints past the tortoise with eyes that can only see the prize that awaits it at the end? Or the tortoise, who takes the time to stop and smell the flowers as it plods slowly, but with great perseverance and determination, down the same long and winding path as the hare? Smelling the flowers makes us happy. Sprinting without taking anything in leaves us burnt out and miserable. Always be the tortoise. You might not get there as quickly as the hare but you’ll have a hell of a lot more fun along the way.
4. It builds momentum
The small wins add up. Success begets success. Stopping to take in each small win generates inside of us the three E’s:
When we feel those things it creates an incredible momentum that drives us forward. Celebrating the fall of that first domino sets up a chain of events that keeps them falling all the way to the achievement of our goal.
5. It helps keep us motivated
When we stop to take in that small win our brains start producing Dopamine, the neurotransmitter that motivates us to keep going. Each success gives us the next bit of fuel we need to keep us walking purposefully in the direction of our dreams.
6. It builds our confidence
Each small win further instills in us the belief that we have what it takes to make our dreams come true. Every time we succeed at something we believe in ourselves just that little bit more. We start to realise that there is no mountain we can’t climb, no skill we can’t learn. The more we grow in confidence, the more unstoppable we become.
7. It encourages other people to do the same
We need to lead by example and put an end to this message from society that we always need to be hustling, grinding, and striving. The only place those three things lead, without stopping to smell the roses, is the doctor’s office. When we celebrate our small wins we permit others to do the same.
8. It gives us positive reinforcement
Some people don’t need any praise, validation or positive reinforcement. I am not one of those people. But, good news for any of you out there who are like me, celebrating the small wins as they roll in means we can stop relying on other people to cheer us on or pat us on the back and start doing those things for ourselves.
9. It’s good for our mental health
When we stop to celebrate a small win or reflect on previous wins, we activate the neurotransmitter Serotonin, sometimes known as the ‘happy chemical’ because it contributes so much to our happiness and mental and emotional wellbeing. What better excuse for a celebratory dance-a-thon than knowing it’s scientifically proven to be good for our health?!
10. It helps us learn
Pausing to take stock of what’s worked well for us can help us strategize about what might work well going forward. If something we did was successful, how might we replicate that? How can we use this success to inspire future success?
11. It helps us to develop a growth mindset
The most important piece of the success puzzle lies in having a growth mindset. That is, believing that we are capable of learning everything we need to learn to achieve our desired goal. While developing a growth mindset takes some cultivating, celebrating each small win gets us one step closer to saying goodbye to our limiting beliefs once and for all.
Dance Like No One’s Watching
Don’t let anyone tell you that the small wins don’t matter because they do.
They matter a lot.
The small wins give us hope that our big dreams might not be so crazy after all.
The small wins give us faith that we have what it takes to make those dreams come true.
The little things are always much more important, and much bigger than we realise.
They are the things that dreams are made of. So go on, put that music on and go nuts…you know you want to 😉