This week reminded me of a post I wrote back in January 2017 – Celebrate the Victories. My week was packed with new baby challenges, grad school finals, public speaking engagements and the routine joys of a day job. By the grace of a loving wife and good fortune, I have a few minutes to write this post before settling in for a weekend with the family and the start of a new graduate school semester.
It is easy to become overwhelmed by our desire to achieve, and to forget to celebrate the victories we have along the way. Such was the case for me this week, when I found myself stressed and panicked on Thursday afternoon, certain that I was going to fail one of the many obligations I had still ahead of me. And in that place of fear and doubt, my mind landed on the idea that even if I did fail to meet my goals this week, I had come so far already. Challenges and opportunities can equally be perceived as burdens or blessings. And when we forget to celebrate victories, we find ourselves increasingly burdened and decreasingly blessed.
While I felt buried by the opportunities facing me, afraid of failure and embarrassment, my fear lifted when I realized that the challenges I was facing were instigated by my own successes. Victories are important. They pick us up, give us perspective, and motivate us to keep persevering. Great achievements are not borne from fear and doubt but from courage and commitment. And realizing our potential and recognizing our accomplishments gives us the encouragement we need to continue forward in the face of fear.
Take stock of where you are. See what you have accomplished. And when you feel like your goals may be too far to reach, perhaps it’s time to stop looking forward and instead take a quick look back. Seeing the distance between where you were and where you are can often lift you up to where you want to be.