Reward Yourself – Now There is a Concept!
How many of you can honestly say that you have something like a rewards list? You know, for when you meet a major (or even a minor) milestone in life.
Reward Yourself – Growing Up
In real life we go to kindergarten, primary school, high school, college or university and for every year we pass, we get rewarded not only by our parents and grandparents (by means of compliments or even gifts) but also by being able to move on to the next level, the next grade.
Reward Yourself – Working For Someone Else
We then start working for someone else we get rewarded for a job well done by means of bonuses, commissions, increase in salary, with a new and more prestigious title, maybe even a company car.
How Do You As An Entrepreneur Reward Yourself?
The concept of “reward yourself” is around us from the outside (parents, schools, employers, etc.). But what about those who are entrepreneurs and business owners? Those who no longer have anyone “above” them handing out the rewards?
How do you reward yourself?
Do you even reward yourself for a job well done?
Do you have a list of specific rewards that you plan to give yourself for specific accomplishments?
The majority of us, including me, we pat ourselves on the back for a job well done but we don't look at it as an emotional and moral impacting act to literally reward ourselves with something specific. Something we have thought about before.
Why Every Entrepreneur Should Have a ‘Reward Yourself' List
What's the purpose of rewarding yourself as an entrepreneur? Simply put, it keeps you motivated and encouraged to keep moving. It satisfies the little girl or little boy inside of you to stay on track and to keep pressing forward with what you are here to deliver to this planet. Most everyone remembers growing up and getting that extra treatment for a job well done. Maybe you got a perfect grade or finished your homework early and your parents let you stay up later, watch that show, play a little extra game or stay out longer. Whatever the reward, its purpose was to communicate to you that you “job well done.” The memory of this ‘reward yourself' system is still engrained within us and it's important that we satisfy the little boy or girl within us, no matter your age. In fact, the older you are, the more important this technique becomes. Aging has a tendency to get us atrophied, not only physically but also mentally, spiritually, financially and in every other way. A reward system can keep us connected to the innocence and joyful part of our own lives.
If you feel you don't need any rewards and your income is reward enough to prove to you that you're on the right track, think again. Even life itself rewards us. Here are just a few examples:
Reward Yourself – Even Life Gives us Rewards
- You reward yourself for a hard day's work with a good meal and sleep.
- You reward yourself with sleep that is deep and sweet when you live an honest life; sleep that is untainted by fear and worry.
- You reward yourself for doing honest work where we give 100% with a steady flow of clients who will bring even more clients to you.
What happens when you don't reward yourself? Simply put, the joy of life and the spark in our eyes starts to fade. Even work horses get to play. Accomplishments may be important but restoring the balance between work and play is too. All work and no reward is no fun. So be gentle with your magnificent self. Compliment yourself a lot for a job well done. Not in a conceited kind of way, but for giving the best you can.
How To Reward Yourself – Create a List – And Stick To It
Celebrate yourself, your accomplishments and your milestones getting there! My challenge to you is to look at your short- and long-term goals and to come up with a list of how you can reward yourself. Here are a few examples and suggestions.
Reward yourself – Step 1: Create a plan
Take out your tactical to-do list or your 1-year plan. Perhaps you have a sales or marketing plan or a sales forecast? Take out those lists and then decide what you want to reward yourself with for specific accomplishments.
For example, you may want to have a certain number of speaking gigs for this calendar year. When you achieve this goal, reward yourself. Or perhaps you want to reach a certain amount of income from a specific source. when you reach this goal, reward yourself accordingly.
Reward yourself – Step 2: Align your reward with your milestone
What should you reward yourself with? Everyone is different and what may be inspirational and motivational to me may not mean the same to you. So it's not appropriate to tell you what you should and should not reward yourself with. What I can tell you, however, is that your reward should be in alignment with your actual achievement. In other words, when your reward and your achievement is ‘equal' energetically, then you are in alignment and this energy will then propel you to move on to the next accomplishment.
Consequently, when your reward is not in alignment with your achievement, you confuse your energy. For example, when a 6th grader passes a test with flying colors her parents don't rush out and reward her by buying a car for her. The reward is neither relateable nor appropriate to the achievement and would confuse the child.
Likewise, let's say you have left your corporate job to become an entrepreneur and you are working towards your first client. You have just achieved your first client and now you run out to go on an expensive 1-month vacation. It makes no sense and is completely unrelated and out of alignment with your actual milestone.
A simpler life example may be someone who wants to lose 20 pounds and they want to reward themselves as soon as they have lost 10 pounds. They don't run out and reward themselves by getting a donut and a gallon of ice cream, right?
If you are naturally tough on yourself then perhaps the opposite is true for you, where you don't reward yourself enough. Let's say your goal was to earn your first $100,000 per year as an entrepreneur. If you reward yourself by going to the movies the little boy or girl in you may feel cheated. You may have to take it up on a notch and give yourself a 2-day trip to a beach, away from cell phones and the internet.
Okay, you get the drift.
What is important is to make the reward match the achievement. A reward too big is confusing as much as a reward too small is discouraging. Find the connection between the milestone and the reward and align the two.
Reward yourself – Step 3: Share in the joy
It's always great to share your rewards with your friends. Invite someone, if you can, or at least send out an email to share your excitement with your clients. Encourage them to do the same! By sharing your joy you are dissipating this precious energy and energetically telling the Universe: “I want more of this please.”
Reward yourself – Step 4: Stick to it
From my own experience and working with my coaching clients I can tell you that more than 80% of my coaching is related to mindset and attitude. The technical know-how and the mechanics of running a business are easy. The harder part is the our mindset around success (and failure). People are often way too hard on themselves. Perfectionists looking for constant imperfections – which makes them imperfectionists (at least in my book). People talk down on themselves way too often and they are harder on themselves than their parents or their teachers every were. It's time to change this now!
If you are not kind and merciful to yourself, no one else will dish out kindness and mercy to you either. Start with you, show yourself an extra dose of grace and stick to this list of rewards.
Why I wrote this article
As for me, the reason I wrote this article is because I did not have such a list and I started to feel like I'm starting to spin my wheels – constantly working (and loving it) but no active acknowledgement to myself when I accomplished something I was proud of.
I was teaching an online course and was 3 students short to reaching quite a significant number of students for this one class.
At the same time, one of my products was just a couple of weeks away from having reached 1 million people.
Something in me made me pause and say: “Hey, this is pretty significant. I want to do something for myself to mark this milestone.”
To reward yourself means to acknowledge and support your magnificent self – don't underestimate the power when you reward yourself! It keeps the innocence within us alive and that in turn keeps our joy for life alive and blossoming. Try it, you'll love it!
I would love to hear about your own ‘reward-yourself' system and your own stories on how and with what you reward yourself, please comment below and share this article far and wide!