What Have You Built This Year?

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Yesterday, as I was walking home from dinner plans with a former co-worker, I started reflecting on my day: I wrote an inspirational post for you all, I wrote some of my book, which helps people take back control of success, I helped a few clients improve their health and lives, and then I went out to a nice restaurant with a good friend.

I felt really grateful for how I got to spend my days. But, as I reached my building and looked up to my large picture window, I felt something else.

See, gratitude is great and all. I know it’s the wellness buzzword du jour. But I didn’t just feel grateful. I felt damn proud. I built this.

I built this entire life. I took chances. I broke really ingrained patterns. I’m on a constant path to improving myself. And hell yeah does that make me proud.

We short-change ourselves all the time. We gloss over our successes. We hardly ever stop for a moment and appreciate everything we’ve built, and everything we’re building.

You know, we’re funny creatures. We freak out and complain and get impatient and feel like nothing is happening. But life is happening in big ways all around us. Huge things. Just because we don’t have a massive transformation every day doesn’t mean we’re not moving by leaps and bounds. In fact, if we were flying through life, we’d probably be a complete mess.

We’re doing okay. We’re doing better than okay. We’re one step ahead of where we were yesterday. Ten steps ahead of last week. And light-years ahead of where we were a few years ago.

We’re doing okay.

Take a moment to think about what it is that you’ve built in the last year. What it is that you’ve accomplished, created, become.

Changing jobs, moving houses, having children, picking up a new hobby, entering a new relationship, traveling to a new location, even speaking up to your boss or having that serious talk with your mother. All of it is moving you straight toward your dreams.

Remember—I don’t believe in luck. It’s too disempowering. We create it every day. We create what we want in this world. We build our own lives.

Sometimes we hit roadblocks. Sometimes we have to pause during a rainstorm. But any good building contractor just knows that’s par for the course. Things never go as planned, and that’s half the fun—but you’re always in control. You’re always the one building.

Spend time celebrating your victories today. Think, for a moment, about where you were this time last year. Or two years ago. Acknowledge how far you’ve come. Acknowledge how much you’ve accomplished in that time.

You have my permission (and that’s worth it’s weight in gold). Celebrate. Do something for yourself. Get a massage, or spend some guiltless time alone, or even sneak a little piece of chocolate.

Don’t put any new pressure on yourself to do more. Don’t berate yourself for how you’re not accomplishing or handing anything. Take some time for just you. Take some time to reflect. Take some time to look up at your castle and be proud of what you’ve built.

You’ve created your life. You’ve built it exactly as is. If you ever want to change it, you have that right. But only you can give yourself permission.

Let yourself be proud. Let yourself enjoy. Because it’s not really about how much success you can achieve; it’s about how much success you can let yourself enjoy.

And, maybe I’m just an outside viewer—but, from the looks of it, I’d say you’re mighty successful.

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