Celebrating Milestones and Victories: Increasing Motivation and Achieving Lasting Change

celebrating-milestones-and-victories-increasing-motivation-and-achieving-lasting-change

Celebrating Milestones and Victories: Increasing Motivation and Achieving Lasting Change

 

Celebrating milestones and victories is an important part of staying motivated on your journey. However, it can also be tempting to mark these occasions by gambling. Let’s explore meaningful ways to acknowledge your accomplishments that align with your goals, and why doing so is crucial for achieving lasting behavior change.

 

It’s not just that we like to party, although we do! Research shows that taking time to celebrate victories, even small ones, can significantly boost motivation. Engaging in personally meaningful activities is important for promoting the physical and psychological well-being of those seeking to change their relationship with gambling*. 

 

Celebrating milestones in a way that aligns with your values can provide a sense of accomplishment and reinforce your commitment to the positive changes you’re making. It’s a way to recognize the hard work you’re putting in and feel proud of how far you’ve come.

 

Here are a few ideas for gamble-free celebrations:

 

  1. 1. Treat yourself to a special experience that brings you joy. Maybe it’s visiting a museum, zoo or aquarium. Take a day off from work and go hiking. It doesn’t need to be an expensive endeavor, it should just be something out of the ordinary.

 

  1. 2.Plan a fun outing with supportive family or friends who encourage your journey. You may be surprised by how different it feels to spend time with family or friends after you’ve stopped experiencing gambling harm.

 

  1. 3. Reward yourself with something you’ve been wanting that aligns with your values. We especially encourage investing in creative hobbies or outlets. Buy that fancy colored pencil set you’ve been wanting. Sign-up for a month of guitar lessons. Investments in fulfilling activities pay long-term dividends.

 

  1. 4. Share your achievement with others in a supportive community who understand. Friends and family can be great sources of support and encouragement, but there’s something different in talking to someone who has shared lived experience.  

 

There are lots of ways to celebrate, the key is to find personally meaningful ways to recognize your victories that feel truly fulfilling and rewarding. As the research notes, it’s important to identify hobbies and activities that are uniquely satisfying and enjoyable to you.

 

Maintaining Motivation Long-Term:

Regularly celebrating milestones, especially early on, can help you build momentum and see the benefits of the positive changes you’re making. But it’s also critical for staying on track in the long run. The research discusses how motivation can wane when those seeking change aren’t getting positive reinforcement from participating in enjoyable activities. Continuing to acknowledge victories over time, even minor ones, can help you stay engaged and driven as you progress. It provides ongoing encouragement and reminds you why you’re on this journey.

 

Making the decision to change your relationship with gambling takes courage and commitment. Celebrating the milestones and victories along the way in a manner that supports your goals is an important piece of the puzzle. It recognizes your hard work, reinforces healthier behaviors, and helps sustain motivation long-term. As you mark achievements big and small, take pride in your accomplishments. Each celebration that aligns with your journey is a meaningful success worth savoring.

 

Remember, slips can happen – to all of us. Having understanding and self-compassion is key. Seek out support from others who get it on the challenging days and celebrate with you on the good ones. Your journey is unique, but you’re never alone. With the right tools, mindset and support, you can absolutely live the life you want – free from gambling harm.

 

Sam DeMello, Founder of Evive

 

 

Reference:

*Dowling, N., Jackson, A. C., & Thomas, S. A. (2008). Behavioral interventions in the treatment of pathological gambling: A review of activity scheduling and desensitization. International Journal of Behavioral Consultation and Therapy, 4(2), 172-188.



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