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Yusuf Saifurahman
Yusuf Saifurahman

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Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about just how important it is to celebrate your wins when you’re looking back at the previous quarter.

I found that my default was to only remember where I failed or fell short. Even when I did remember something good, I didn’t really take any time to celebrate it or appreciate it. That’s not healthy, though, and it’s certainly not the culture I want for you. Frankly, I don’t want anyone on you to be as hard on themselves as I am on me.

I spend time thinking about why it is so important to celebrate wins and want to share that with you today. See, in addition to making you feel good, there is also a hidden reason to celebrate wins. I’ve found that purposefully looking for progress I’ve made actually improves the accuracy of my self-reporting. I’m biased to overlook those wins and focus on projects I didn’t finish or goals I didn’t hit. That’s not really the full picture of what I accomplished in any given time period, though. Half the time I’m just so buried in work, moving from one project to the next, that I don’t even notice how many things I’ve crossed off my list, let alone celebrate them.

I’m also learning to celebrate that any progress is some progress. I tend to default to an all-or-nothing approach where I only recognize a win as accomplishing the goal I set for myself. These are big wins like finishing a project, shipping a piece of content (or a book!), or hitting a fitness milestone. Those are all great, but they happen over long periods of time and sometimes don’t go as planned. Instead, I’m learning to celebrate progress for what it is. If I only hit 50% of a goal I had, that’s still 50% more than if I had given up. It’s important to celebrate even really small wins like just showing up and giving it a shot.

How to Celebrate Wins

Here’s a process that you might find helpful to start celebrating wins more often.

First, try to periodically gather up and review your wins. I have a few different sources for this. My paper journal is my first source, since I do my reviews and planning on paper first. So I’ll go through those boards along with notes I’ve taken or things I’ve been thinking or feeling. I’ll also go back and reference my calendar to see if there’s anything I’ve missed. Incidentally, this is the same process I use to write up quarterly reports for work. It really makes the process of gathering wins easier.

Don’t neglect the importance of getting better at sharing your wins. This one has always been hard for me, because I was raised to keep quiet about my accomplishments so as not to appear arrogant. The problem is that if no one knows what you’re doing, they’ll assume it’s nothing. There are two key places to do this: with your boss and in public. This article by Kim Maida sums this up really nicely:

Managers want to do right by the contributors on their team, but they aren’t omniscient superheroes. It’s impossible to know every single thing that each team member accomplishes on a daily basis, especially in autonomous, distributed, or remote work environments. Share your wins with your boss and share them often. Your manager will appreciate it, and they will remember and take actions as a result.

And regarding sharing wins publicly:

While this might sound like “shameless self-promotion,” it will get you noticed. Sometimes we all need a little shameless self-promotion. There’s nothing wrong with public validation for the blood, sweat, tears, and tremendously hard work we put into the things we do.

You can share your wins on social media or in blog posts. I’ve also discovered that many Discord communities have a celebrating-wins channel, which is really nice. Having a designated space like that helps relieve people of feeling self-conscious or spammy. I also really love getting to see other people’s wins and celebrate with them!

Lastly, it’s important to actually celebrate wins yourself. Some people do this with a special meal, a bottle of something nice and tasty, or buying themselves something fun. I think what works for me is unplugging a little early for the day or giving myself an extra bit of leisure time. Regardless, it’s surprisingly important to do this.
B.J. Fogg, a behavioral scientist at Stanford who wrote a book called Tiny Habits, has a helpful article about why it’s really important to celebrate every tiny win to help solidify new habits.

Let’s Practice
Let’s make this issue really practical and beneficial to everyone. This week, think of one recent accomplishment you did, no matter how big or small, and take a moment to celebrate it. Write in and
let me know what the win was and what you did to celebrate it

In conclusion
The best way to celebrate your wins is by rembering them and sharing them with the world. No one would know if you can only if you show them.
And that's all.
If you got questions or confusion or anything you are free to hit me up would really love to help out as fast as I can.
Tech enthusiast
Twitter, Instagram: Saifyusuph.

Top comments (2)

marienoir profile image
Mary Okosun

Really nice and encouraging too @yusuf_software . For me, a major win this week was a tech company recognising one of my articles and reaching out to me to create content for them. I haven't celebrated it yet but I actually intend to over the weekend 😊😊

saifyusuph profile image
Yusuf Saifurahman

That's a big news. Keep it up and write more better ones to get more recognition.