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What an Unopened Bottle of Champagne Taught me About Celebrating Life

The date was December 8, 2018. I was given a very nice bottle of champagne. My wife (Alecia) and I agreed that we would open it when we had something significant to celebrate. Whether that would be celebrating life, or celebrating the wins from one of our businesses, we knew we wanted it to be something good!

Alecia is great at celebrating the small wins and big wins. I, on the other hand, am not. I often forget to celebrate altogether. When I have a small win, I view it more as just another task completed. When I have a big win, even something like launching or having my podcast reach the top 20 in the entrepreneurship category, I view it as a step to an even bigger goal.

Listen to This: Setting Goals and Thinking Bigger for Your Life and Business

As a full year had gone by, I still had that bottle of champagne sitting there, waiting for “the perfect win” to celebrate. Occasionally, Alecia would bring it up, “When are we going to celebrate something with this bottle of champagne?”

My responses were always the same, “When we complete that next big thing!”

So there I was, well into 2020, still have not celebrated anything. At this point, this bottle had been sitting on my minibar for a year and a half. Then it hit me…

This bottle of champagne had become a physical representation of an internal issue.

You see, 2019 was a great year for me.

  • I received much recognition from my aerospace job.
  • I received a sizable bonus that year.
  • My blog, DailyPS grew substantially and the team of authors surpassed 100.
  • I launched Creating a Brand and found immediate success with it.

Even among all of these great wins, I continuously told myself, “When I reach that next milestone is when we will bust open this bottle of champagne.”

The problem is this: That next milestone just became another achievement, not a celebration. Every. Single. Time.

Let’s take launching Creating a Brand for example. I launched the business, launched the podcast, launched my courses, saw success with all of them. The podcast even reached the Apple top charts one week! (Number 197 out of all 700,000 podcasts.) Shirley, this would be enough to celebrate, right?

Wrong – And don’t call me Shirley.

I mentally filed each of the things I mentioned above as another milestone or slight achievement. But nothing worth celebrating.

I’m going on a little bit here, but do you see my point? There’s always something else to achieve. Always another goal, always another target.

Here’s what I’ve learned: Life will pass you by. You have to decide to celebrate everything, even the little things.

My wife and I sat down to have a “come to Jesus moment” where she brought all of this to my attention. At that same point, we decided on what next goal we’d celebrate. What we decided on still doesn’t seem like a huge goal to me, but I’m sure that’s just because I still have much to learn on this topic.

The goal: Have reach 1,000 members. WE DID IT!

Alecia immediately launched that cork across the room as I covered my eyes and one other delicate body part (TMI, sorry)

As we held two glasses to cheers, she said something I won’t ever forget: “Cheers to the small wins!”

Friends, I encourage you to celebrate your progress in life and in business, even if it’s small. Remember, life is about meaning, not about achieving more and more until one day you are no more. So enjoy the journey, and stop to take in the view!

Cheers to the small wins!