It’s October! The leaves are turning colours, people are cozying up in their big sweaters while eating all things pumpkin, and camp directors all throughout the land are reflecting on their previous summer.
This is a hugely important part of the evaluation and planning process and all too often we look at the previous summer through a lens of finding ways to improve next year.
But wait… we often forget to celebrate our successes, big and small. There’s a quick nod of appreciation or an email sent around congratulating us on increasing the camper numbers or coming in under budget, but do we really celebrate those things?
And what about the smaller accomplishments? Those go almost completely unnoticed! Maybe you figured out a better way to track staff time off, or shared a really hilarious moment that allowed you to know your leadership staff better – those little moments are just as important as the big, game changing wins. Every success is worth celebrating, even the smallest act can have a big impact. For example, on an average day you probably don’t notice how many times you blink, a blink may mean nothing to you but to your eye it’s a welcome drink and protection from the elements. Try not to blink for a full minute, or even 30 seconds and you’ll understand. Small moments have big impacts, a blink goes unnoticed but regular blinking keeps our eyes healthy and allows us to focus on the more important things like reading, just like all those small successes at camp will eventually lead to a big shift, and a great big win.
Take a few moments, grab a piece of paper and write down all the wins you had this past summer, big and small. Then read and re-read your list. Just sit for a moment and allow yourself to feel excited about the things you’ve accomplished. Feels good doesn’t it?
I’ve started keeping a notebook where I list my wins from each summer, I fill it out once a year and at the top of the page I write WINS and the year then I use the following categories; program, campers, facilities, admin, staff, and I list the things I’m proud of in each section.
So now that you have quietly acknowledged your awesomeness – do something to celebrate it!
Turn on your favourite music and dance your heart out, draw yourself a bubble bath, treat yourself to a glass of wine or a pumpkin spice latte (it IS October after all), just do something that will make you happy no matter what it is just make sure it’s a celebration!
Be kind to yourself, and focus on the positives it will lift your spirits and give you the push you need to tackle the bigger, harder projects. Congrats on a great summer! <3
What’s your favourite accomplishment of the summer? Do you have a special way of rewarding yourself for the big and small victories? Tell me about it in the comments below.