A few years ago, I told my friend Ashley (Talley... I have like 6 friends named Ashley, no lie) that I was doing a vision board to place in my apartment. I told her how I saved magazines for months and all of the goals I had in mind from ministry down to trying to get some abs. I'm still working on that last one. She said to me "I want you to put "I'm proud of me" on the board.
She explained that I needed a daily reminder that even if I didn't meet my goals or of the year didn't pan out the way I envisioned, that I still needed to be proud of myself and the saying on the board would be a reminder. At her advice, I searched through images on Google until I found one. Satisfied with how it looked, I copied and pasted it in a file that I saved to print out for the vision board.
About two months ago, I was sitting on my couch with a midsize mirror leaning against my coffee table so I could apply my makeup before going to work. I stared back at my reflection and thought about all I've overcome and accomplished in the last couple of years. I thought about my spiritual growth, the time that I came into realization that it's ok to not be ok, acknowledging that my tears don't compromise my strength and how I finally learned how to say no sometimes. And without thinking, as I looked back at myself I said "I'm so proud of you!".
What have you survived/experienced in your life that you should be proud of? It may have been cancer, becoming a parent, burying a loved one or simply keeping your mouth closed when you wanted to go off so badly. You should be proud of you and you should say it to yourself. It's not arrogant to pat yourself on the back and it may have been awhile since anyone else has admired your progress. There may have been days that you didn't want to get out of bed for whatever reason but you did. That's praiseworthy and don't let anyone minimalize moving forward no matter how small it may seem to them.
So I want to challenge you to look in the mirror, take a deep breath and reflect, them say out loud "I'm so proud of you!"