Friday, January 4, 2013

Sometimes, Ya Gotta Treat Yourself

When I was in elementary school, I had a teacher that would send us home at the end of the week with a little post-it note meant to describe our conduct that week. At the time, it was the source of much stress for me because I knew that a frowning face could mean a very craptastic weekend (not that it happened very much). As an adult, there are not post-its with faces. Sometimes, there are promotions, raises, awards, etc. but they are generally linked to doing well in my pursuit of a paycheck.

Yesterday, after I posted my New Year’s Resolutions, I started thinking about the accountability portion of it. Ash and I agreed to check in monthly to make sure we are accountable to someone other than ourselves. The idea is to stay on track—especially since a lot of our goals involve each other.

Naturally, the next thought was of what happens if we’re on track—or woefully off track for that matter? Will there be a report card? Will the smiling post-it make a comeback in my life? Neither idea worked for me. I decided the result of the check in was the best time to honor an intention I set a few years ago to treat myself without feeling bad about it.

I think it is something we should all commit to. First, it doesn’t take much. It is about honoring yourself and celebrating the achievement of a personal goal. It could be a toast over dinner or a fancy dinner out. It could be a new outfit or a new wardrobe (especially if any of your goals relate to weight loss). It could be a luxurious spa trip or a manicure at your local nail shop. Heck, it could be a manicure in your own home courtesy of your own hands. It’s not about the cost. It is about taking time to reward yourself for a job well done.

As for the moments when you don’t deserve a smiley face, ask yourself why you got off track. Address it or work on addressing it for the next month. Don’t beat yourself up. If you get halfway through the year without being on track once, consider reevaluating the goal. Is it worth having it on the list? Can you achieve your desired goal with the 6 months left in the year? Should it be bumped to next year when you might be better prepared? Don’t chicken out but if achieving a goal is beyond your capacity for any number of reasons, revise it or tuck it away. The goal will be there until you achieve it. No one can steal it. Once you’ve reevaluated, take a deep breath and treat yourself for recognizing your limitations but not giving up on your dreams.

Cheers and happy achieving!

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