Why Do We Hesitate to Share and Celebrate Our Successes?

  This is my 100th post on the blog! I wanted to do something special to mark the occasion and celebrate. Initially I felt a little silly wanting to celebrate something as small as a blog post milestone, but then I thought, why shouldn’t I celebrate? It’s something I’m proud of accomplishing.

  It also got me thinking about how women often seem reluctant to celebrate things they consider to be an accomplishment because others might not see them as such. They are excited about achieving a goal but downplay it because they are afraid someone might try to squash their joy or belittle their accomplishment.

  It’s not unreasonable to think that someone may try to undermine our excitement. Most likely it’s happened to all of us at some point in the past and is why we are now hesitant to express our elation when we do something that fills us with pride.

  Why do we allow others to dictate how we ought to feel about an accomplishment? Additionally, why do others (or sometimes even ourselves) try to rain on others’ parades of celebration?

  As parents we often encourage our kids to be proud of their accomplishments. They put their dishes in the dishwasher by themselves? High five! They learned to ride a bicycle without training wheels? Great job, let’s send a video to Grammy and Grandaddy! They aced a test? Let’s go for ice cream! We are so great at supporting and cheering on our kids.

First day of preschool!

  And kids are naturally excited about even the little things. They think everything is amazing and don’t worry about tamping down their joy. I’m sure somewhere along the way they learn to tone down their excitement, possibly from their friends and/or the adults in their lives. I don’t want to think that I might be responsible for my children’s loss of enthusiasm about celebrating the big and little things in life. If they don’t see me celebrating my successes, what picture am I painting for them about adulthood?

   So why do we tend to downplay our successes and accomplishments? Are we afraid of having joy over something because we feel that if we do, it is opening the door for something bad to happen to even us out? Bad stuff is probably eventually going to happen to us. That’s life. Why not celebrate the good when we have it to help carry us through the challenges and set backs?

  Are we worried that celebrating our accomplishments might make others feel bad about not achieving the same thing? Some people do believe that when others succeed or achieve, that it is taking away from their ability to do the same. This is a fear of scarcity, that there won’t be enough for everyone, but that’s not true. There is room for everyone. We ought to see others’ success as validation that achievement in this area is possible and an invitation for us to also attempt it. When one person strives and achieves, it should to give us all permission to do the same.

  Belittling others’ accomplishments most likely stems from jealousy. We are working on our dreams and goals which is quite admirable. Other people may feel that they are unable to do the same so they try to keep us from succeeding or feeling good about our success so that they won’t feel so bad about not making efforts toward their own goals.

  So, yes, some people will not consider publishing one hundred blog posts to be anything noteworthy, especially on a small, unknown blog like mine. But, to me, it’s one hundred times I’ve sat down and worked on my writing. It’s one hundred times I’ve attempted vulnerability and connection. It’s one hundred times I’ve sought to encourage someone else on the journey of life. That’s a big deal to me and one I find worthy of celebration.

Where the magic happens. 🙂

  In fact, I want to encourage us all to be proud of our accomplishments and celebrate them whenever they happen. It’s okay to be excited about reaching a goal or milestone. Our success does not mean failure for someone else. Celebrating our achievement does not mean we are gloating. It is inviting others to share our joy.

  We should celebrate and be excited with those who are celebrating. We should be inspired and encouraged by others’ achievements. We should be cheering others on as they head toward their goals.

  Today I’m celebrating one hundred posts! What are you celebrating? Have you successfully lost 20, 30, 50, 100 pounds? Did you win a local sports competition? Have you had an article published somewhere? Do you get complemented on your children’s good manners? Can your son tie his own shoelaces? Do you have a baby or toddler and were able to take a shower today? Did you land a big client or order for your company? Did you streamline a process at work or home? Please share one (or more) of your accomplishments with me so we can celebrate together!

  To make this more of a celebration, I am going to give away a few things to people who comment on this post with an accomplishment or success they’ve had. I will draw five winners at random on Friday, September 2nd to win one of the following items:

  • An orange beaded necklace

  I look forward to hearing about others’ successes and accomplishments. Let’s celebrate together!
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13 thoughts on “Why Do We Hesitate to Share and Celebrate Our Successes?

  1. This is so encouraging Megan! I love it!
    Lately I've had the motivation to really put the time and effort into my sculpting. I love to make things out of clay, and eventually want to sell my stuff. I get really discouraged though because I feel that other stay at home mom's accomplish more serious or important things with their time, and that my sculpting is silly and makes me look childish. I'm really proud of the little donuts and the Pokemon things I make though, and making them makes me happy. I feel accomplished and excited when I finish something. I'm very blessed to have a supportive husband who gets excited with me about my little creations. ��

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  2. How fun!! Right now I am super proud of my monogram business. I didn't work as much as I wanted to this Summer and I feared that it was going to set me up for a weak Fall, but I have met every goal I've set for myself financially which feels so good! And I am on track to contribute to our monthly income more than I ever have which also feels amazing!

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  3. Great job!!!! I am here if you ever have questions about selling on Etsy! And aren't supportive husbands amazing? There were times I was like I CAN'T GO ON, and he was like YES YOU CAN!!! And honestly I believe he is the reason I am still creating!

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  4. congrats on 100 posts!! 🙂
    I recently had a chat with my boss about my job – which resulted in a title change and pay raise! I'd been doing the work already, but I was proud (no matter the outcome) that I had the boldness to initiate the conversation.

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  5. Jesse, I love those donut earrings you made! You are so creative! Let me know when you start a shop because I'd love to purchase a Jesse Original! (Sorry for all of the exclamation points!)

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  6. Brooke, That's awesome! Congrats on your pay raise and new title. I hear that it's harder for women to take the initiative to ask for a raise (I know I would be hard-pressed to do so myself). Glad you took the initiative to advocate for yourself and had such a positive outcome!

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  7. Congratulations on your 100 posts and thanks for visiting my post and sharing in the celebration of my one year blogging!
    Great reflections here- it's true that we can be very good at celebrating children's successes but less good when it comes to ourselves, or other adults. I like how you describe it as “inviting others to share our joy.”
    (PS- I'm in Scotland so feel free to leave me out of the giveaway as the postage would probably cost too much.)

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  8. Congratulations on your 100th post Megan! I know they took a whole lot of effort (smile). You've highlighted a real challenge here – we celebrate our children's achievements but struggle to appreciate our own.

    Today I'm celebrating my son's 9th birthday and almost 1 year of blogging (smile).

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  9. Congratulations on your 100th blog post! That is certainly something worth celebrating both personally and publicly!! I'll celebrate with you. I submitted a couple of articles to some magazines last week. It's way out of my comfort zone, but on my list of goals for the year. Woo-hoo us!

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