Today I celebrated the three year anniversary of my daily meditation practice.
After completing today’s Daily Calm, I paused for a moment to take it in and reflect on the efforts I have made to get to my mat and my cushion every single day for the past three years.
I wanted to give myself permission to soak it in, to really honor myself for this commitment and dedication. But almost immediately, I felt the air deflate from my balloon of joy as I shot the arrow of self-judgement straight through it.
This is completely normal.
How We Deflate Our Shining Moments
No sooner do we reach a major (or minor) accomplishment than we look at all the ways we fell short.
… but I didn’t ….
… but the result didn’t …
… but the circumstances didn’t …
Every balloon of achievement deflated with the needle of disappointment.
And thus we struggle to ride the wave of all we have done, of the efforts we gave, of the results we achieved.
It’s our natural tendency to look for what is wrong, or what could be better, because that’s how we improve.
It’s easy to look back on your year and see all that you didn’t accomplish; all the places you fell short. Especially when you attach disappointment to every accomplishment.
Could you have done more? Perhaps.
Could it have been better? Probably.
Maybe the results didn’t pan out as you desired.
The biggest win is often in the effort itself. That’s the only piece you control; you have no control over the results.
You showed up. You took some action. Maybe it was one small step. It was a step.
I reminded myself of that today, as I reconnected with my win: I showed up. Every day, no matter what was happening, I created space for stillness.
It’s not a small thing.
Your Year-End Reflection Ritual
As you reflect on the year that is ending, as you look back on all you accomplished this year (and, I promise you, you accomplished more than you think you did), how would it feel to stand in celebration of each singular achievement exactly for what it is?
How would it feel to own your efforts, regardless of the results?
How would it feel to ride the balloon, without weighing it down or deflating it’s air?
It might just feel like you’re flying into the new year.