Why Eid is a good time to celebrate your small work wins

With our busiest Ramadan yet I was reminded to celebrate with colleagues as well as family this Eid

Eid provides an ideal time to consider how celebrations can be incorporated into achievements on the job. Jeffrey E Biteng / The National
Eid provides an ideal time to consider how celebrations can be incorporated into achievements on the job. Jeffrey E Biteng / The National

This week millions of Muslims around the world will celebrate Eid Al Fitr, which translates to the celebration of breaking the fast. Families and friends will gather around a meal and prayers, exchange gifts, and celebrate the Holy Occasion. To me, Eid is the ultimate reward for the extra effort I invest in Ramadan.

Eid will be extra special this year, as I decided to also celebrate the latest success of my business venture. Our office has witnessed the busiest Ramadan yet, and we achieved more goals in these few weeks than what we have accomplished throughout the year.

As I was preparing my Eid dress and wrapping gifts last week, I wondered why I didn’t celebrate my small business wins more often. Think about it, when was the last time you celebrated mini milestones in the office? In the past, I would mainly go out for a celebratory dinner if I received an award, or something extraordinary happened. But I rarely celebrated the small wins - the achievements that made those big milestones possible.

When I discussed this topic with my fellow entrepreneur friends, I found out that they too rarely celebrated their small wins. Like me, they were busy moving on to the next thing, and thinking about their futures, and next year’s targets.

So, we decided to turn things around at the office, and agreed that we would celebrate whenever we achieved one of our targets no matter how small it was. We would either have a celebratory lunch in the office, all go out on a movie date, or simply order in a cake.

We generally tend to feel good when we celebrate, right? That’s because endorphins are released inside our body and they contribute to that good feeling, in the same way exercising does. An article written for Psychology Today by the late organisational anthropologist Judith E. Glaser, indicates that celebration has a positive impact on the team, company and individuals. Words of encouragement and motivation, especially when told to someone who is under work stress, could help bring them to a calm state.

Imagine if you don’t celebrate small wins and treated them as any mundane incidents in your life, then you will slowly train yourself and your brain to accept that you are not doing anything exciting or joyful. You may begin to perceive your work as boring or unfulfilling, and that may lead to negative thoughts. As I prepare to celebrate this week and reflect on our work the past month, I find myself prouder of my work and our accomplishments, and motivated to go back to our office and achieve more goals after the holiday.

Celebrating with family is good but celebrating with colleagues has added benefits. For one, you will get to bond with your colleagues and get to know them outside the scope of work. In addition, they will feel a sense of belonging and recognition, and motivation to achieve more. I also find that inviting people from my professional network provides an opportunity for growth and possible future collaborations. For instance, when we were celebrating one of our big milestones three years ago, I invited a business acquaintance. There at that party, she told me that she would like to work with me, and we made an initial agreement, which turned into one of our biggest projects to manage.

Celebrating small and big wins provides a learning opportunity for you and your team members. You can reflect on how things went well this time, what was the reason behind that, and what you can do to ensure more of that success.

With Eid and the holiday coming up, take this time to reflect on your latest small achievements, and consider how to incorporate celebrating them. Eid Mubarak to you and your families.

Manar Al Hinai is an award-winning Emirati journalist and entrepreneur, who manages her marketing and communications company in Abu Dhabi

Published: June 2, 2019 08:00 AM

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