When I was young, my sister and I would bring home awards or achievements that we were proud of and present them to our family. From music, report cards, or positive feedback from our teachers, we would place the awards on our family’s mantel in the living room. It wasn’t until a resent trip home I realized that a lot of the awards were still on the mantel. A picture my sister had taken when she first discovered photography, a plaque from school, and a group photo from a sports event all laid next to each other in full display. As I got older, I was careful what I placed on my mantel, and noticed that it was mementos or memories that I was proud of; shells from a beech vacation with friends, pictures of family and loved ones. My mantel shifted from showing off awards to giving thanks to the moments and people I cherish.
It is awards season again. It always seems to be somewhere. From New York to LA to film and music festivals internationally, there is an eruption of awards and ceremonies this time of year. And when the commentaries come in on the aftermath, processing the evening’s outfits and triumphs, there is usually something to be said about the acceptance speeches. The winners are given only a few minutes to summarize an entire career, and to thank and validate everyone of influence. I would need much more time even if I was just thanking a friend for helping me make a meal.
Awards are important. They help us be competitive and set goals. It is important to be rewarded for hard work. Awards encourage, if not in the short ceremonies, that a moment be taken to recognize achievement and to thank those involved. Oh how I hope to integrate awards in my life. What if I made myself recognize more milestones, more successes, and stop to acknowledge how far I have come. To thank those that have helped me achieve success, and set new goals and achievements. My memories and mementos remind me of what I value and am thankful for, but how do I let others know? This is my hope for the future. Not that I aspire to win an Oscar, but that I celebrate and reward everyday victories and thank those that help me along the way. It need not take a glamorous red carpet even to help me feel accomplished, and to provide an avenue for me to thank those close to me. Everyday victories of sobriety and mental health achievements are celebrated at Brookhaven Retreat® LLC. Our clients are rewarded immensely and supported to achieve their goals, big and small.