Do you remember as a child when you would do something good, anything, and your parents would praise you?
It could be something as simple as trying to tie your shoe – you did not get it right, but you gave it a try and were better than yesterday so they were overjoyed because you were making progress…
Most parents are that way – they celebrate every victory their child has, no matter how small. They see the value in even the smallest of steps toward improvement. Even if it isn’t a leap, it is still a step toward improvement, right?
So, why are we not like that with ourselves?
Especially when it comes to a major milestone in our life, like getting clean, why do we ignore the small victories, only aiming for the big ones?
It is easy to look at the bigger picture and think, “Well, I’m not there yet so I’m not good enough.”
But, start by breaking that down…
What steps do you have to take to get there? The bigger picture is all about the little victories that it is composed of within.
So, just to reiterate that: one small victory is great progress toward the bigger picture and your overall goal.
To say you have been clean for a month, you have to start by staying clean for a week or even just a day.
Continue to reach toward those monumental goals, but appreciate the little successes and victories along the way.
By celebrating the small victories along the way, you can observe how you have improved and continue pushing yourself forward.
After all, it is all about motivation, right?
So, when you are recovering from your addiction, find your motivation in your small victories.
Keep coming back to your meetings. Keep working with other. Keep talking to others. Keep using those tracking tools. And each time you succeed in something, reward yourself.
One of the best ways to avoid losing sight of the small victories is to make a list of goals:
- Start by listing out what your main goal is – i.e. to be sober.
- Next, break that down into three (or so) major milestones you need to hit – i.e. sobriety for one year.
- Then, break it down even further into the small milestones you need to hit to make that major milestone which eventually translates into your overall goal – i.e. be sober for one month straight.
And, the goals can be whatever best fits your recovery…
Maybe one is to mend the relationship you have with your child.
Well, did they answer when you called today instead of ignoring your call? Did you have a five-minute conversation with them instead of being forced to leave a voicemail?
That is a victory! Small, but still victorious.
Celebrating even the smallest of victories will keep you on track for your big goal.