Congratulate yourself in advance

Here’s one of my favorite motivational activities.

Pick a goal: a rank/pin level, income, or other goal.

Create a real greeting card congratulating you on accomplishing your goal, written from the point of view of someone powerful you respect. Examples are: your favorite business speaker, your higher power, the Universe, your favorite philosopher (living or deceased), your future self.

Yes, I mean go to the store and buy a physical greeting card, make one yourself, or use an online system that prints and mails one for you.

Important: make sure it is made of stiff paper and the fold is on the side. (That way it will stand up on its own for weeks or months.)

Not sure what to say? Here’s an idea:

“Dear Jane, you are awesome! I always knew you would become an Executive with your company, and I’m very happy you accomplished that goal. Congratulations! ” and sign it with their FIRST name, as if you were very good friends.

Now mail it to yourself. I’m serious– put a stamp on it and mail it to your address.

When you see it in the delivered mail, you will likely get a instant lift in mood.

Open it and set it in a private place — for example, display it in your at-home office or your bedroom. (NOT where co-workers or the general public can see it)

Imagine that person or being saying those words to you aloud, with great pride and warmth in their voice.

Put the card away the next morning.

Here’s the real secret: at the end of a hard day, set the card on your kitchen table or other private area of your home (maybe your dresser or nightstand). When you see the greeting card in the morning, if you’re like me, you’ll get a burst of happiness from seeing it. Savor the feeling of accomplishment and happiness.

When I was working diligently toward my now-current rank, I created 6 such greeting cards with different congratulatory messages. When I walked into my at-home office the morning after a hard day (or in the final days of working focused toward the goal), I got that burst of energy and happiness.

Repeat as many times as you please.

And please, do not pretend to other people that the signatures or messages are actually from those famous people… this activity is just between you and the 4 walls of your private room.

The power of this technique comes from setting out the cards occasionally, deliberately, AND in a private room.

Use it wisely.

Even more fun: after reaching that goal, you likely will receive congratulatory greeting cards or letters. Set these on display every evening until you get tired of seeing them!

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

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