Power of Celebration

I have this client who was supposed to clean her room, so she created this agreement with her family. She said, “I will clean my room on Fridays, but for the rest of the week, I will just make sure I have no dirty dishes and no trash sitting around my room.” The mom and dad were okay because, ideally, the mom would like our kids to keep their rooms cleaned every single day. This child, who’s 15 years old, stated, “I’m going to commit to this every Friday in my room, being spotless. I will commit to not having dirty dishes or trash in my room,” I asked her after the first Friday. I said, “Lisa, how did that feel? How did it feel on Friday to have your room spotless?” She was like, “I mean, I don’t know.” I said, “It didn’t feel good?” She’s like, “Yeah, I guess.” I said, “Well, what did it feel like to know that you kept your commitment? That you wrote that agreement and you actually kept it?” I was like, “Well, I mean, it’s good; I’m glad.”

She’s not giving me anything. I’m really trying to get her to really feel the excitement that I want her to feel. It’s at that moment that I noticed that she doesn’t know how to celebrate. Her wins, she doesn’t know. I told her, “We’re going to do something new here; every time you’re able to check something off throughout your day, celebrate.” Yes, I’ve taught her how to organize her day; she has a schedule, and I want her to take everything off that she does, and I want her to celebrate. I asked her, “What are you going to do to celebrate?” She kind of just looked at me. I was like, “Okay, so let’s try something different.”

I said, “What if the celebration was jumping up and down for two seconds? What if the celebration was just high-fiving yourself, saying, ‘I did it! ’ What if celebration was just recognizing something like, ‘Wow, that felt good?’ You get to choose what celebration is. No matter what it is, you need to be consistent in doing that. Can you do that? She says, “Yeah, I think so.” A week goes by and we’re coaching again, so I asked her, “It’s Friday; your room looks great; how does it feel? “She’s like, “It feels so good. I am so excited to have clean sheets. I vacuumed my room.” She went to look and took the camera, and she showed me her room, and there were vacuum tracks. She goes, “Doesn’t it look nice?” I said, “it does look nice!” It was such a shift in just a week, and I said, “Wow! I really like how you’re celebrating yourself. She goes, “I did good.” I said, “You did good!”

What a difference in her language in just a week. I asked her, “Tell me how your week went. She was like, “Oh, Ms. V, let me tell you, every day I finished what I had to do, and I said, ‘Yes!’ after every time I finish something. There was one day that I did that five times.” I said, “How did it feel?” She says, “It’s interesting because the other day, I was sitting in my bed, it was like 11 o’clock at night, and I was thinking to myself how good I felt, how good I felt because I’m doing things that I need to do. Not because my parents want me to, not because I have that agreement, but because I feel good about doing it. That’s the power of celebration; that’s the power of being your own raving fan.

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