Posted on October 10, 2011


Once you get to the 7th and final stage of change, you are, for the most part, done. You’ve reached your goal. You’ve accomplished what you’ve set out to accomplish. Now all that’s left to do is celebrate.

You would think a stage called Celebration would be a welcome one, the stage that no one skipped. But what I’ve found is that this is actually the stage that many of the go-getters neglect to complete.

They prepare carefully, work hard, maintain their progress thoughtfully and even bounce back from relapse pretty well. But they neglect to celebrate their victories. Although they’ve worked very hard to get to this place, they don’t take the time to really relish in their success.

I can relate. I seem to have the same problem too, which is why I feel a bit hypocritical telling you all how important this stage is. As I’m writing this, there are several major goals I’ve accomplished that I have yet to celebrate, so perhaps we can all agree to take the necessary time to celebrate all of our hard work. 

Celebrating your accomplishments is important for a couple of reasons. First of all, it helps round out the balance between the work/play aspect that is necessary in any kind of goal-setting. So much of reaching a goal requires hard work. In order to keep one’s self committed to reaching additional goals, one needs to have some fun time built-in too. All work and no play is not a very balanced way to live. It’s easy to burn out when all you do is work and don’t take time to celebrate what you’ve accomplished. 

But just as important is the closure that celebration can bring to the culmination of a goal. One of my incredibly wise clients from Israel was telling me how, although she and her family plan to tour famous sites of the US in May, she is going to make sure her teenage daughter will make it back in time to be a part of the end-of-the-school-year festivities. “It’s so important that she be here to celebrate the end of the year with her American friends,” she told me. “This will give her a necessary sense of closure before we go back home.” 

Celebration is a way to reward yourself for what you’ve done, to reflect on how far you’ve come and to give this process of reaching your goal a much-needed sense of closure. 

So, without further adieu, let’s go celebrate what we’ve worked so hard to create…