Written By: Reneé Racioppi
A lot of times in our lives, we are so focused on the long-term goals. The ones where we accomplish something major and receive incredible amounts of recognition for them. These kinds of goals make us feel good about ourselves and remind us of how successful we are. These major goals are always going to be important, but what’s even more important are the smaller victories. The ones that people may not notice but that are pivotal to reaching not only larger success but better mental health as well.
During a time when a majority of our lives has been put on pause, it may feel impossible to reach our long-term goals. It may feel more challenging and much more difficult to accomplish something that we had set out for ourselves. This can be from a lack of motivation, a limited supply of resources, or even just an unattainable reality in the current state of the world. Due to this challenge, those at risk for or struggling with anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues (obsessive-compulsive disorder [OCD], anger control issues, family system issues, etc.), may have a more difficult time realizing their worth and acknowledging that their smaller victories matter as well.
The great thing about small victories in our lives is that they can spring from pretty much any anywhere. Think back on your week or even just your day so far and try to list all the accomplishments you carried out already. These do not have to be grand or life changing, just something that you did and that either made you feel better, made your day more productive, or even made someone else smile.
Some small victories are not limited to but can include:
- Making your bed
- Getting ready for the day
- Drinking enough water
- Finishing your work for the day
- Remembering to eat
- Taking a second to meditate
- Completing any kind of workout no matter how difficult
- Talking to someone about how you are feeling
- Reading a few pages of a book
- Decreasing your screen time even just by a minute
- Checking off your daily to-do list
- Smiling at yourself in the mirror (bonus points for giving yourself a compliment!)
- Getting up earlier
- Helping someone else with a minor task (think: helping your parents with technology!)
- Donating food to a local food pantry
- Volunteering your time
- Making a meal plan for the week
The list is endless.
There is the possibility that you may have either thought of these ideas or tried them already and found them to be unsuccessful. There is also a greater possibility that some of these are things you do every single day and they do not make you feel better. The main aspect to consider is acknowledging these as victories, no matter how small they may seem in the moment. If we constantly belittle our daily accomplishments because we are so focused on how much larger they can be, then we will never truly feel fulfilled in this world.
It is so important that we take our mental health journeys one day at a time. If we think of how much work needs to be done, it can sometimes feel overwhelming and cause us to backtrack. Instead, if we take one step and acknowledge that one step, we can create a much more solid foundation for ourselves and for the start of our journey. Celebration makes us excited and happy, so why not pinpoint an abundance of things to celebrate in our lives? The small victories are what keep us motivated to tackle the larger ones!
For some, this may be easier said than done. If you’re struggling with overwhelming anxiety, depression, obsessive thoughts, bothersome behaviors, or anything that is making you uncomfortable, please reach out to us for a free consultation to see if we can be of help to you. Call us or text us at (908) 914-2624 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.