take pride in your wins
celebrate all you have done
revel in glory
I have a love/hate relationship with my year end review.
On one hand, I find the process valuable. Reflecting on the past year reminds me of just how much can be accomplished in a year with small daily actions.
Some people say that we often over estimate what’s possible in a day, and underestimate what’s possible in a year. When I look back on a year I can see all that was possible and accomplished.
Noticing the patterns that arise in my magic moments from the year is valuable information that guides me how to spend my time in the next year.
And I love the feeling of “wrapping up” the year: extracting the wisdom and the lessons and packing away the rest before moving forward.
And yet each year I procrastinate my year end review. As much as I appreciate it, I also dread it.
Because each win and success is invariably entangled with a disappointment.
In my head, it goes down like this:
I published a daily blog … but I didn’t promote it enough (or, at all).
I finally launched my first group program …. but not quite the way I envisioned it.
I kept to my daily workout routine…. but I didn’t always push my edge.
If you’re a high achiever you may resonate with this. Many of my clients have this challenge too. And it pops up every year when I facilitate year-end-reviews.
Every accomplishment is laced with disappointment.
When I allow those inner voices to chime in, it brings down the entire accomplishment. They steal the joy.
And it moves the focus away from what was great.
So in my year end review process I have a rule:
When I recount my successes, there’s a full stop after each win. No “buts” or qualifications.
That’s not to say the disappointments don’t matter. You can’t just sweep them under the rug.
They get their own section: a dedicated time to grieve and process the failings.
But first, the wins.
Some of us have been conditioned that it’s wrong to boast of our achievements. That belief that we must be humble, that there’s always room for improvement, can lead us to check our pride and find the disappointment in the accomplishment.
But that approach only leads to self-criticism and self-judgment.
It’s important to celebrate, to be proud of what we have done — in an unabashed, shameless way. This is what gives us momentum for the next win.
There will always be ways to up-level and room for improvement. But if you don’t celebrate what you’ve done, you’ll get stuck in futility.
As we wrap up the year, give yourself permission to celebrate without hesitation. Even better, share some wins with a friend and let them share theirs with you, then celebrate each other.