Maybe you have achieved an important goal or dream, yet quickly managed to move on to another location task? Or maybe you boldly took a risk, yet your performance didn't meet your expectations or others? Or perhaps the perfectionist in you felt the accomplishment wasn't big enough or worthy of celebration? Do you generously celebrate your wins?

I thought I was someone who was simply good about celebrating successes. And, maybe you've too. But recently, a few significant events opened my eyes to the importance of celebrating and the costs associated when accomplishments are minimized, criticized or glossed over. I invite one to explore the "celebration factor" in your life, as I share my own personal recent experiences with you. It's forever changed my relationship with celebration, and how I want to consciously decide to honor the big and little achievements along life's path.

It's no secret that I've been busily taking care of preparing my book for publication. While there are numerous tasks and milestones as you go along, planning to print is among the biggies. December marked the initial print run of 125 galley copies for book reviewers. While I consciously knew this was a great achievement, the big event was kind of lost in the flurry of other activities. Instead of feeling elated and joyous, I have to admit my experience was more just like a mini postpartum depression. I'd a bodywork session, and didn't think a lot of it.

Not a long time ago, I uploaded the files for the initial BIG print run. There wasn't a parade or party. The files were simply uploaded. Mission accomplished. Yet, my task list seemed as overwhelming as ever. Yet again, I felt my normal happy self uncontrollably nose-diving into droopiness. This postpartum-like depression seemed worse than before. It was awful! Conversations with other authors confirmed this was something they'd experienced too. But, why? Would some conscious celebrating have helped?

A third event brought me even more clarity. Last weekend, I attended a workshop. Because this next phase for me personally is about putting myself into people eye, I decided to participate in the amateur talent show. This is definitely outside my safe place, as I don't consider myself a performer AT ALL. But, I've admired women who dance freely in front of friends, and thought it could be fun. Most importantly, I decided it will be a metaphor for authentically expressing myself in front of a group. I figured if I couldn't put myself out there in front of a supportive, loving group, then I'd maintain big trouble on my book tour.

So, I went for it. I gathered tips from the dance instructors who were attending the event. There is almost no time for you to practice. My legs were shaking terribly in anticipation of this event. I was nervous. I hate making an idiot of myself. But, before I knew it - I DID my performance. All of them clapped and loved it.

Did I celebrate? Heck no. I stood in the back of the area replaying the performance in my own mind, my body still shaking a bit. The critic was active with judgments. I'd moved too quickly. I'd forgotten a number of the tips, like breathing. Could everyone tell how nervous I was? As others congratulated me, I deflected their comments, minimizing their kind words. How often have YOU deflected or minimized acknowledgment from others?


Published by Charlesa Gibson