A brief reminder that your accomplishments matter, too.
We celebrate it in our children
Like every weekday afternoon since trading in the cactus bushes of the borderlands for the green grass and soaring pines of northern Virginia, I strolled over to the school to pick up my daughters at the appointed time. I was sporting the typical feel-good staple clothes that allow me to sink into the shadows under the designated tree where we meet, sweatpants and a race shirt. After an uncharacteristically productive Monday, it felt great to visit with a few other moms and hear all about the start to their week and tonight’s dinner plans. Typical stuff.
A minute or two after the late announcements, out strolled Jello, our older daughter. She was holding her golden “Shout Out” recognition card like she had just won an Oscar and needed everyone to see it and cheer her on. Boy did we ever. Around here, a “Shout Out” is a BIG deal. What was the huge accomplishment today? She volunteered to partner with someone who lacked a writing buddy. Bravo, Kiddo.
About 30-seconds later, the kindergarten daughter of a friend peacocked her way across the grass with her golden ticket. Again the crowd erupted in a tangle of high-fives and fist bumps. She had been a model citizen in the hall today and now everyone knows it. Boom.
Soon we were all heading back across the street and into the neighborhood. Proud moms schlepped the backpacks of their joyful elementary school rockstars as a reward. Like every other, it was a great day to be a great kid.
It’s so refreshing to see people we love feel free to show pride in their accomplishments.
Why, though? Shouldn’t that just be normal?
I like to consider myself the Ultimate Honest Cheerleader. Ask anyone who has shuffled through too many miles with me during after an ill-concieved race plan. I live to tell you how fantastic you are. I want you to work. Then I want you to celebrate your accomplishments. When you’re not quite sure how, I’ll do it for you. Loudly.
At what age do we stop giving ourselves the credit we deserve? Why does it sometimes feel so awkward when people acknowledge how fabulous we are?
I propose this: I say we find a way to strut around with our Shout Outs. Let’s be bold. Let’s accept our high-fives and fist bumps when we deserve them. Here is a concept: let’s even allow ourselves to write our own Shout Outs. Then, let’s make sure we shower the praise and recognition on those we love as often as possible.
Are you crushing the deadline on a tricky project at work? Have your sales skyrocketed this quarter? Is your house cleaner than it’s ever been for a few days straight? DID YOU KEEP YOUR MINI-HUMANS ALIVE AND SOMEWHAT ENTERTAINED? Good for you. Rock on, Lady.
Sometimes those are easy. We aren’t always terrified of accepting praise for truly quantifiable achievements, right? It’s when we are getting a little more personal that things start to feel a little shifty.
Are you a talented writer? Do you have an empathetic heart? Do you just know what the missing ingredient is in a new recipe? Are you a success? Are you joyful servant? Are you loving?
Those are worth recognizing, too. We need people like you to make this thing work. YOU are important.
Time for a Shout Out
If you have found yourself questioning whether you are worthy to join that new group, fancy enough to show up, loved enough to step out, smart enough for that promotion, then it’s time for a boost. The answer to all of the above is likely a resounding YES!
If it’s on your heart, it’s probably time to believe in yourself and make the jump. Start right now. Take out the nearest pencil and paper and write down three to five things that make you incredibly proud to be exactly who you are today. Please, tape that right to your bathroom mirror, your refrigerator, your bedside table, or anywhere that you will see it daily. Resolve that you will accept compliments surrounding those few things without any discomfort. Accept that these are just a few of the ways that you are beautifully and wonderfully made and remember to be proud of you.
I certainly am.
If you are looking for a community of who raised their hands (ahem…clicked the buttons) to join with other brave, powerful women ready to make a change, come on over and join us in the Facebook group where we believe in you until you believe in yourself, We Are Finding Finish Lines. We’d love to meet you!