My parents had been married a few years when I was born and with only a semester left in college my mom put it on hold to stay home with me. I was a senior in high school when my mom finished and earned her teaching degree. She didn’t walk across a stage and the degree came in the mail. I have thought often about what that felt like to open that envelope and see what she had worked for and earned. It was a hard time in our family and there was no celebration. I am sure the degree was tucked away and life went on. I graduated from college four years later and there was no celebration. Our family was so broken at this time and even though I deeply longed for celebration we didn’t know how to do it when we were all together.
It has only been as an adult that I have realized that there were moments and people we should have celebrated while I was growing up. There are moments that need to be celebrated and honored today. This post is not just about your personal life or just about your business life because they both collide, overlap and build upon each other. So often we can set goals, accomplish them and move onto the next task without stopping and acknowledging the beauty of what just was.
So, as business owners and family life builders how do we honor our lives, accomplishments, family, employees and goals? If you are aware of who is watching you and learning from you it may make the whole process easier. If you are a parent you have children watching how you honor your goals and accomplishments. If you are an employer you have employees watching to know what is worth celebrating and you have a direct impact in how invested they feel helping you build your dreams. It should be building their dreams too. Are they a part of something that is using their gifts or do they just have a job? How you celebrate milestones gives them that answer.
This process has been trial and error for me because it has felt awkward and uncomfortable to celebrate myself because of how I was raised but I am learning to change not only for me but for my children. This is how we are learning to celebrate in this business and this family:
- We set short term and long term goals. When they are accomplished we stop and acknowledge what we just achieved.
- The little day to day goals are sometimes even more important than the huge goals being accomplished. Life is made the most beautiful about all of the little accomplishments being realized.
- Celebrating can be anything from stopping to read a new book, turning the music up loud and singing, taking your favorite hike, dancing around the office/house, a special dinner, an open house, a book signing, a party. It is acknowledging that people worked together or that you worked hard to finish what you started.
- It is honoring that it is all a process and that one action is built upon another. It is looking back and seeing that it is all connected. It is celebrating that it is rarely an overnight success.
- It is an opportunity to include those in your life to see what you do. To allow them the chance to take a glimpse into your gifts and what is being created. I often hear from business owners how their family and friends don’t understand or acknowledge what they do. That is OK. This is your journey and not theirs BUT take these opportunities to allow them to celebrate with you and it may help them to validate what you are doing.
- Know when to celebrate and honor yourself and when to celebrate with the whole team. Your daily goals being met is just as important so take the time to celebrate with a phone call to your best friend, a walk or run, catching up on your favorite magazine/show, a cup of coffee, quiet time etc. These are the little things that make your day beautiful and the difference between working for someone else and building your own creatively made business. Reward yourself because you can!
- Celebrating is not about spending money. It is about stopping, acknowledging and appreciating what was just accomplished. It is actually about self care and caring for those around you.
- If you won’t celebrate your own accomplishments…who will? How will your employees learn to celebrate their goals being met? In the end you have a business that moves on to the next task and the next task and the next task. You as the employer will burn out and your staff will not have any loyalty or investment in your business and move on.
- Be content in living in the now! We can not find contentment in our day to day if we are living in what is next on our list, next accomplishment, next idea. This is the act of being present and celebrating this day.
We have hooted and hollered when we have reached a certain number of members on our creative network, we have had special dinners and prayed over a boy going into high school, we have taken the day off to hike and play and honor a person or goal, we have prayed over our home and what it will be used for, we have sent out special gifts to teachers that have shared so much on our creative network and we have sat down with our creative team and tried to help them reach their own creative goals and not just our own. It is work and it is being intentional. And it has made all of the difference.
When we opened our studio on our land…we celebrated! Our children deserved that. They deserved the privilege of being a part of something big and seeing what happens when you follow your dreams and work hard. It is teaching them not only to honor what we are building but what they will build someday.
If you are interested in building or growing your business I would love to talk with you. I have a small amount of consulting openings each month and would love to share my rates with you and help you build your own creative business. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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