I truly believe we are all in Recovery. Every one of us.
Think about it. We've all suffered setbacks. We've all had to deal with trying times. We're all faced with challenges--almost all the time. Most of us would be out of work if this weren't true. Innovation comes from a challenge. New therapies stem from personal dilemmas. Researchers everyday spend time in labs to find the answer to a pressing need. We're all in Recovery. Or maybe that's the way we should be operating, because it implies that you're taking responsibility.
I tell my life stories here at BIKE WITH JACKIE, and they're not always pretty. I do it to let you know that it's okay to be real and raw. I've learned from my own relationships with people who hid who they really were that you can't be intimate with them. You can't trust them. You can't rely on them. And you can't be real with them in return. That's a much larger loss than the eventual breakdown of the relationship itself.
So my mission in life is to help other people get real with their life challenges, to admit them, and then to deal with them, simply because they stop us from moving forward. To accomplish my mission, I teach, sometimes indirectly, how my spiritual navigation tool (the mental BIKE) can be applied to your life. This is briefly explained at the top of this page.
But, basically, I spend time here sharing the lessons I learned from the seat of my bike, lessons that are never-ending. I continue learning new ones, as we all do if we're paying attention, because Recovery IS on-going. It's what we do while we're living life. It's only when we stop living that Recovery ends.
You see, for me, my special brand of BIKE represents rebirth, growth and most especially moving forward.
To do that, I've learned one most important lesson: You must celebrate your successes. Your successes, no matter what they mean to anyone else, are your big deals. They deserve the attention they've earned. And that what's today's post is about: celebrating you, celebrating your successes.
With that, I'd like to announce my most current one:
I just found out my book (pictured above with a goofy grinning me beside it at Barnes & Noble, Kierland Commons, taken by my friend Rebecca A. Allen) is doing so well that I've earned half of my advance already--in just three months!
That's a pretty good track record, folks--one that had my publisher sending me a Royalty Statement a year before I was expecting one. When I opened that letter yesterday, I was pretty darn happy. I know I've been working hard to sell the book, to pitch the book, to get the word out, but I had no idea I was doing that well--not until my publisher told me. So I celebrated. I shared the information with a neighbor, and she popped open a bottle of wine, and we toasted. Then my boyfriend took me out to dinner. And now I'm celebrating here, by sharing the message with you.
Here's why it's so important: Ten years ago, I certainly didn't think I could ever write a book. It would have been too overwhelming a task for me. I know. I tried. I was assigned to do a chapter of a travel guide for a publishing company, and I had to turn the project back in. I had to give up on the job. For personal reasons that were going on in my life that I didn't even know existed, I just couldn't do it.
Clearly, that wasn't the greatest moment in my life. But when I was able to put that behind me and forgive myself that part of my life, the world and all its possibilities opened up again. I began looking for them, seeing them and embracing them. So the travel guide pictured above became yet another symbol. It, too, relates to my BIKE message, which empowers you think differently about yourself. For one thing, you'll be able to recognize when your "tough hill" is ahead, and you'll know you can climb it anyway, because:
You can make mistakes and overcome them.
You can be a better person than you thought you were.
You can do much more than you ever thought you could.
You can choose to associate with people who will help make your dreams come true.
You can change your mind and create new dreams.
You can grow yourself physically, no matter how out of shape you think you are.
You can grow yourself mentally, no matter how doomed you feel.
You can celebrate your successes, because you've earned them.
And your success deserves your respect. It's great when other people celebrate with you, but that's not the important thing. The important thing is that you celebrate you.
So, let me ask you? When was the last time you gave yourself this gift? Write it down here so we can watch you shine.