Learning to be our own cheerleaders is good for our mental health. Here’s why.
We all like to be celebrated and cheered on. But how would you feel if no one or very few people cheered for you after you’ve accomplished making it to the next step in your goal, or when you went from 20 sales to your first 100 sales? Or how about when your business launch that you worked so hard on was a success? I’m sure for a lot of us, it wouldn’t feel good. The hard truth is, those who we feel should celebrate our accomplishments and milestones with us are often not the ones who do. We have to learn to be okay with that.
In all honesty, that was a hard pill for me to swallow. For years, I’ve genuinely cheered people on and supported them. I love to see anyone working on and accomplishing their goals. So, when I wasn’t receiving the support that I had been giving for years, I felt slighted. And it wasn’t because I felt that someone owed me. It was more so, “Hey, we can get so much further when we support one another. So, why aren’t we?” But then I was so busy working on my projects that I didn’t have the capacity to worry about who wasn’t supporting me. I tend to focus more on those who do support me.
Why you should become your own cheerleader
It’s not easy to get to a point where we can say “I’ve invested so much of my time and finances in making my dream come true, and I’m finally here.” So, it’s understandable to be proud of yourself and want others to be proud of you as well. But when we expect others to be our cheerleaders instead of us being our own biggest cheerleaders, we set ourselves up for frustration and maybe anger at times.
In Be Your Own Cheerleader: An Asian and South Asian Woman’s Cultural, Psychological, and Spiritual Guide to Self-Promote at Work, Neelu Kaur writes, “Alongside being a super rock star in your role at work, your other job — and actually the most important job you will ever have — is to manage your mental health. This is no easy task and takes constant vigilance of what you allow in and out of your precious mind. The other piece of mental health management that is quite challenging to control is the internal dialogue you have with yourself. The inner critic can run the show and your job is to make sure you keep it in check. The inner critic doesn’t rule the show; you do. You ultimately have a choice: Are you going to work for your inner critic or are you going to manage and lead your inner critic? Empowerment comes from a place of managing the negative inner dialogue.”
I love this passage because although the author is speaking in terms of the workplace, it’s something we should apply to our personal and professional life. Life would be so much better if we did. We must learn to be our own cheerleaders and recognize the benefits of it. Hopefully, these five tips I’ve shared will help you.
1. Don’t have expectations for others
No one cares more about what your goals are than you. You know what your vision is and how you plan to make that vision a reality. No one else understands that, so you can’t expect them to care just as much as you. Of course, it’s nice to receive support of any kind while on your journey, but don’t weigh yourself down with negative emotions if you don’t receive it.
2. Celebrate any milestone
It’s freeing and a confidence booster to celebrate yourself. It doesn’t matter the size of the milestone you’ve reached or what the accomplishment is. Celebrate everything. The more you celebrate yourself, the less you will care about those who didn’t celebrate you.
3. Cheer yourself on
Write your goals down, and once you’ve reached them, be proud of yourself. Give yourself a mental high five, and maybe treat yourself to something nice. Speak positively to yourself. I’m a firm believer in manifestation being a real thing, so I often speak what I want in my life as though it is. Know and understand that you are deserving as much as anyone else.
4. View yourself as your ally, your own best friend
Being your own best friend means supporting and motivating yourself just like you would a friend — showing up for yourself when others cannot or will not. You will gain more self-awareness, confidence and compassion for yourself in doing so.
5. Practice positive affirmations
Practicing writing positive affirmations is another way to cheer yourself on. Affirmations motivate you, challenge you, and push you to reach your full potential in life.
So, celebrate your accomplishments even if no one else does. Don’t expect anyone to be supportive, and also don’t be angry if they don’t. Showing yourself the same support you would a friend, will boost your confidence and happiness.
In conclusion, being your own cheerleader isn’t about being arrogant or thinking you’re better than anyone else, but it’s about making sure you don’t feel the need or desire to count on others to validate you and your accomplishments. It’s also about keeping taking steps to keep your mental health in check.