Didn’t Get a Big Break in 2015? Good

2015 is almost over – and that means it’s time to look back at all your Big Moments from this past year!

But what if it feels like you didn’t exactly have any Big Moments this year? What if it feels like the whole thing just kind of came and went?

Well, that’s actually a good thing. And you’re not alone.

Those so-called “Big Moments” seem to be at the center of every major success story, right? From the overnight entrepreneurial success depicted in the new movie Joy to the story of Ben Franklin discovering electricity with a key and a kite, the big successes we hear about the most are predicated on one major life-changing turning point.

Ben Franklin key and kite

The half-naked cherubs are strictly a matter of historical accuracy.

It makes sense, then, that we want to define our own stories with major turning points.

And it really makes sense that when we don’t experience a Big Moment, we feel disappointed. Especially at the end of the year, when we look back and accept that the turning point we may have been hoping for still hasn’t come.

But being successful isn’t about Big Moments and turning points.

Sure, you hear about Big Moments all the time. They make for great stories! So does winning the lottery – that doesn’t mean that it’s the only way to be successful.

We romanticize Big Moments because they make success feel immediate, like flipping a switch. Problem is, that’s not how most people find success.

Heck, even that thing with Ben Franklin and the kite probably isn’t true – it just makes a cool anecdote!

Growing your business, your followers, your revenue – these things take time. Even companies that experience faster-than-average growth do so gradually, often over a period of months or years.

So while it’s seriously tempting to discount your successes with “I only gained this many new followers per month” or “My monthly revenue only went from this number to that number,” you should actually be pretty proud of those things. Despite whatever the big success stories might make you think, that’s actually just what growth looks like!

Big Moments aren’t always a good thing anyway.

In fact, they can be the total opposite.

Big moments are unpredictable – and worse, they’re unsustainable.

The idea of hitting a massive growth spurt is pretty enticing, but the reality is a lot less so. It’s like a sugar high – it feels great while you’re riding it, but when the crash comes, you’re gonna feel it.

You'll feel great while the rush lasts - but it won't last forever.

You’ll feel great while the rush lasts – but it won’t last forever.

Growing slowly and steadily feels less exciting, because it’s often not very conspicuous. (Okay, it can even seem straight-up boring.)

It’s the same way with dieting and losing weight! Notice how with New Year’s around the bend, you’re seeing a lot more advertising for fast weight loss solutions? All those pills and powders promise rapid results because the idea of a quick transformation is appealing – but crash dieting and speedy weight loss almost never lead to permanent results.

The lifestyle changes that lead to slow, consistent transformations, on the other hand, are more sustainable. (Plus, you get to eat more than just kale.) You might not notice the changes immediately because they’re so gradual, but at least you know that when you hit your goal, it will be because of habits you can maintain.

That’s how you should think of the progress you’ve made over this past year – and actually doing it is easier than it sounds.

As you look back, don’t look for Big Moments or epic turning points, and certainly don’t wonder what you might have done wrong if you can’t find any.

Instead, ask yourself questions like these:

  • What am I doing now that I wasn’t at the beginning of the year?
  • How have my numbers (revenue, followers, etc.) changed since the beginning of the year?
  • Which goals did I meet, and how did I meet them?
  • Which goals didn’t I meet, and why did I fall short?
  • What would I change about my strategy from the past year? What’s the one thing that paid off the most?

If you finish the year by trying to think of Big Moments, you might not realize just how far you’ve come over the past 12 months. Focus instead on the overall progress you’ve made, though, and it’s a lot easier to see everything you’ve accomplished!

What goals have you realized in 2015? Forget the so-called Big Moments – we just want to know how you’ve grown over the course of the year! Share your wins in the comments below, and celebrate yourself, gosh dang it.