Celebrating Personal Progress

My tax information went off to my accountant yesterday, exactly 27 days before the April 15th filing deadline. Contrast this with last year when we filed for an extension and my information went out in late July!

As a result, I was filled with energy last night–the energy of accomplishment along with the energy of growth. Last year, July; this year, March. I am making progress!

We are all making progress in our lives and it is critical to our self-image and emotional well-being to recognize and celebrate this growth.

The Law of Attraction says, “You attract more of what you focus on.” Unless and until we recognize and celebrate our own, individual progress, we keep ourselves stuck in self-images that are outdated.

We compare what we do to what others do instead of monitoring our own progress. The one measure is deflating while the other is invigorating!

I first noticed this years ago when my foster daughters were still in school. I would compliment them on their art (both are gifted artists) and they would immediately reel off a list of classmates whose work was much better than theirs.

As my daughters grew into adulthood, I noticed they compared their place in the world against that of others and it pained me. Others have not had to overcome the circumstances my girls faced. I see them as walking miracles; I want them to see this, too.

As I asked my girls to compare their progress only against their own achievements, I knew I must do the same or be a hypocrite. It has turned out to be an unexpectedly wonderful gift for all of us.

When my girls call now, it is often to report a triumph. My oldest called over the weekend to report that, instead of reverting back to cigarettes when she got angry, she took a long walk around the block. She was comparing the old “her” to the new, seeing tangible progress!

My youngest now calls to tell me how much work she’s accomplished at her office. She no longer mentions what her colleagues did in comparison. Progress!

And I no longer wonder why I’m not more on top of my taxes–I made a four month jump from last year to this year. Progress!

My point is that, for our self-image to keep pace with our evolution, it is necessary to acknowledge progress. Memorize this phrase, “That was then, this is now.”

My oldest daughter once used any excuse to pick up a cigarette. That was then. Today she applies techniques that prevent her from slipping. This is now.

My youngest used to call overly concerned with the impact on her of what her co-workers were doing. That was then. Because of her good work, she was recently asked to set up a satellite office. This is now.

As we focus on what we have accomplished and the progress we are making, we no longer worry about what others are doing because we celebrate our own achievements–and they are enough.

Last month I bought software to keep this year’s finances organized, and I expect to send my tax information out early next January. The reason I can expect that is because I no longer think of myself as someone who is late with her taxes.

That was then, this is now.

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