The crowd cheers. A warm sensation of success bubbles through you. Your body relaxes in acceptance of accomplishment. You feel honored. Like you made a difference. You changed lives and improved them.

I love the feeling of accomplishment. It really makes me want to accomplish something. Isn’t it that applause, that adulation, that feeling of accomplishment that drives us to rewrite the script one more time, to push our bodies to hold that yoga pose or create another art project for the kindergarten class.

So, what I am pitching is…start with the adulation. Start with the Congratulations. Let the feeling of accomplishment wash over you so you know where you are headed. Let the congratulations drive you through the obstacles to the successful completion of your goal.

I recently put up a “Congratulations” sign in my living room and it does wonders. Everyone who comes in wonders what they did to deserve it. It helps them reflect on the everyday accomplishments we sometimes blow past. If we don’t give value to these small accomplishments, how can we build steam for the big ones?

Every night before bed, I run through what I accomplished that day. I acknowledge myself for giving food to a person who was hungry, I acknowledge myself for the writing I did that day, I acknowledge myself for taking good care of my body, I acknowledge myself for any small breakthroughs –any change in a pattern – any upleveling — any sign of a more open heart, I acknowledge myself for any refocusing I did that day, any healing work I did that day, any kindness I showed to myself or another.

My body/mind/spirit needs this positive reinforcement. It likes to hear what went right so it can do it again tomorrow. Often if we don’t feel acknowledged and valued by the world, it is because we are refusing to acknowledge and value ourselves.

So, say “Hooray!” Don’t be shy. Say “Great job.” Say “I’m proud of you” whenever possible and you’ll find you have more and more to say “hooray” for.

Congratulations! You did it!

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