When I started seeing a therapist again last year, one thing we worked on was keeping a running list of all the accomplishments you have in a day. Now, I know what you’re thinking, “some days there just aren’t accomplishments though”. While this may seem true on the outside, I can prove to you that’s wrong.
And I’m not talking about moments of gratitude here (hell that’s another item on my 2017 Soar list…I’m still working on it!) But I mean all the little things you do in a day. Did you make time to chat with your co-worker/flatmate/person on your commute? That means you’re a kind a caring person who connects with the world around you. How about finally ticking that annoying niggly item off your to-do list (fold the laundry, post that letter, empty the garbage) – all #marginalgains
Case in point – I had a big bad awful day (BBAD – how about that for an acronym!?) recently. It seemed to be one of those days where everything hit me at once from all sides, and it had me retreating into my tortoise shell, zoning out in front of Netflix.
But still, I pulled out my ‘Thrive’ list in my phone. I looked back at all the other entries of where I found some beauty and wins in the day. It didn’t take me long to knock a few more onto that list from that day. The day didn’t look so bad after all that. It’s moments that make up a life and something I’m realising is how much power we give to certain moments. The ones that hit us the wrong way straight out of the gate in the morning and leave us in a terrible mood, catastrophizing all day. Or the ones where life throws something at us, but we stick our hand up, ready to grab and tackle it.
It’s not just about perspective here. You can have that bad day and choose to have it. But make sure you do just that. On my BBAD, I knew I was in a bad place, and I accepted it. I told myself that I was choosing to be upset for now, I was going to sit in those emotions (not lash out, not stuff my face with ice cream) and just allow it to be. Once it was over, I actually felt a weight off and was happier than when I began. Once you add in those moments of sunshine in the rain cloud, it didn’t seem so BBAD after all.
It’s still something I’m striving toward but I know I’ve felt more empowered and boosted my self-esteem more from simply jotting a few things down at the end of each day than any self-help book or hours in therapy have done.
My list started small, but when I look back, there are a lot more than #marginalgains on it. It’s a reminder that I still have plenty to be proud of, happy about, and grateful for. And so do you.