Do you struggle to find the time or motivation to take the bold actions necessary to see big changes in your confidence? Do you wish you could engage, without fail, in one convenient activity per day that would produce an exponential shift in your progress?
Today, we’re going to discuss one simple daily habit that you can use to jumpstart your confidence journey and begin the radical transformation of your life.
What is that habit? Acknowledging your wins.
Now, before we get into what I mean by acknowledging your wins, I’d like to encourage you to visit DrAziz.com, where you can download my free eBook, 5 Seps to Unleash Your Inner Confidence and access a variety of trainings and strategies that will assist your confidence development. These resources are exactly what you need—especially if you’re a newcomer to confidence development—if your goal is to uncover core foundational practices that will allow you to consistently solidify your long-term, sustained mental wellbeing.
In the meantime, however, let’s get back to today’s discussion: acknowledging your wins.
Most of us have been struggling to accomplish our goals for so long that we’ve fallen into a habit of self-abasement and completely given up on positive reinforcement.
Let me give you an example:
Recently, in one of my more experienced mastermind groups, I decided to finish up the call by asking everyone to share their wins. Instead of the stream of excited responses I was expecting, however, I was met with a screen full of sheepish faces.
No one was willing to share!
When I asked what was going on and we started to explore the hesitancy as a group, we uncovered that even though every one of them had some wins on their minds, they didn’t believe those wins to be worthy of celebration.
How often does this happen to you? Are you able to acknowledge your wins, or have you set the bar so high that it’s impossible to celebrate a win unless that win defines the pinnacle of success?
When considering our wins, we MUST accept the idea that each one is significant, no matter how trivial it may seem . . . and we have to be proud of it.
Believe it or not, success does not come from focusing only on your shortcomings—you’ll never grow, learn, or increase your confidence if all you’re doing is beating yourself up:
- You never do anything right.
- You failed again!
- That wasn’t as good as it could have been.
- You have to do better tomorrow.
If these sound like lackluster motivational strategies, it’s because they are.
There is no wildly successful organization, group, company, or family in the world built entirely on negative feedback.
Any entity that neglects its positive advances in exchange for an unforgiving eye on perfection at all costs is doomed to misery and/or complete failure.
Imagine a professional basketball coach who never pumped his fists after a great play; imagine a parent who didn’t applaud his child after successfully riding a bike for the first time; imagine a boss who refused to acknowledge when you’d done something well, always choosing instead to focus on what could have been better.
I bet that last example isn’t too hard for most of us to imagine. In fact, most of us have been there, or at least know someone who has . . . and what was the result? A company full of coworkers who hated each other’s guts, talked about the boss behind his back, felt dejected going into work every day, and generally just wanted to quit.
This is a terrible strategy, and it’s what you’re doing to yourself every time you fail to acknowledge a win: you’re enforcing that negative mindset that keeps you in strife and never provides a moment of satisfaction.
You’re talking about YOURSELF behind your back; you’re hating YOURSELF; you’re creating an internal environment in which you want to quit and walk out on YOURSELF.
Not only is this an ineffective strategy, it’s also one that will consistently produce the same negative result, over and over.
How’s that working out for you?
When something isn’t working, you have to flip the script and try something new. When beating yourself up has run its course, the time has finally come to practice acknowledging your wins.
But how do we make this a consistent practice? One day at a time.
Here’s what I suggest for someone who is new to this practice: count your wins. Grab a journal and begin to write them down—at least one win per day that you can record for all time and recognize as a tangible entity on the page.
Try making the list on your phone, where you will be able to access it at any moment and in any situation.
Again, these wins DO NOT have to be ground-breaking! A win is simply any action, risk, or decision that you acted upon despite discomfort; it’s any moment in which you ignored an old story about who you are and chose to say something positive about yourself instead; it’s any moment in which you chose to be on your own side and talk kindly to yourself.
Now, I can already hear the gears turning in your mind: you’re worried that setting the bar too low will result in the death of your progress.
I would like to argue the opposite!
Fact: success builds on success.
When you feel as though you’ve accomplished something, your body and psyche can feel that momentum, and they feed off of it instinctively.
One book that I love on this concept is Mastery, by George Leonard. In it, he discusses how he deals with the issue while teaching Aikido Martial Arts. When he’s working with a new student, he might see 30 things that the student is doing wrong. Instead of focusing on all of that, though, he’ll mention a few things that the student is doing well and then point out one change they could work on for next time. He knows that the other 29 things will be able to wait until later, but the important thing is to encourage growth by making small adjustments while focusing on what’s going well.
It can be a major head game to try and build yourself up once you’ve destroyed your morale and convinced yourself that you’re not enough (which, sadly, is far too easy for most of us to do).
If you want to move forward in your confidence development and start making major changes in the way you live your life, then you must make the mental shift into self-encouragement by acknowledging your wins every single day.
Take the 15-20 seconds that it requires to write your wins down every day, and then you can catalog them over time and look through them when you need a reminder of what’s really important to focus on.
You have the power to change your world view for the better . . . and it all starts with these small tasks.
Start acknowledging your wins today and see what happens!
Please join in the discussion by sharing your questions and comments below! Are you acknowledging your wins? What is one thing you did today (no matter how small) that made you feel proud? How can you work to “turn up the volume” on these wins in the future? I love to see you participate in these discussions and support each other, so let’s keep it up and spread the encouragement!
Until we speak again, may you have the courage to be who you are and to know on a deep level that you’re awesome.