Celebrate each other (and yourselves) !
This month so far I've had the pleasure of celebrating Eric's birthday, my friend Stevie's birthday, and Stevie finishing their book that will soon be published.
I love celebrating loved ones and friends, and believe celebrations don't need to be limited to just birthdays. In fact, I deeply believe in celebrating each other often and with vigor. Even small things like trying a new recipe for the first time and having it turn out well merit a "Congratulations!" in my book.
To celebrate and lift each other up in moments large and small, to rejoice with loving kindness in another's joy means we find inspiration in their accomplishments and we get past the ego stories of envy and jealousy.
It's a bit cliche' but the saying "How you make others feel about themselves says a lot about you" is true.
Strong relationships don't just happen. They take great care, time, and energy.
When we celebrate each other we're bonding and strengthening that relationship. It's just as important to have people in our lives that are there to celebrate us as it is when we need a shoulder to cry on.
Being there for each other through the good and bad increases our trust, appreciation, and intimacy with each other, and is very much like putting deposits into our relationship bank accounts.
- Whether we're celebrating or being the shoulder to cry on, consider their love language. Find out what it is and speak it, and while you're at it, find out what yours is and share it too. We each receive and give love in different ways, and the way we receive love and show love can differ as well. If you're not 100% sure what the heck I'm referring to with love languages, look up The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman. This book goes into great detail about it, and though it seems like a book just for people in romantic relationships I assure you it's for all relationships.
- Focus praise on their process vs. the person. For example, if someone played a wonderful piece of music, instead of "You're a great musician!", try instead " It really shows that you've put a lot of time and dedication into this piece, it's beautiful!" This ensures they feel supported and seen without adding the pressure of living up to the title of "great musician" in the future. They'll be less risk averse, and their identities won't be tied to their failures or successes.
- Celebrate yourself. When you celebrate yourself, you're feeding your basic human needs for self-love and self-acceptance. We often fall into the trap of judging ourselves harshly, and celebrating ourselves is the best self nourishment on an emotional level. Celebrating yourself means you're building self-respect and when you hold yourself in high regard, and celebrate things big and small in your own life, it makes it easier to do so for others.
The whole point of our existence is each other. To connect and see ourselves in each other, to know that when we love each other and celebrate each other we do the same for ourselves. Separateness is an illusion. I am you and you are me, and I love you.
Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. - Goethe