For weeks I’ve looked with envy at the names artfully written in glowing marker on a chalkboard sign at Great Lakes Chocolate and Coffee. I knew that it would take time to earn the right to be introduced to our coffee shop clientele as a barista, so I was content to take orders, grind and make fresh coffee, serve bakery and chocolate items and clean up after everyone.
But this was the week I officially learned how to “pull” espresso, and even how to fill, take apart, clean and reassemble the machine that makes that luscious liquid. So finally, during a visit to meet friends at the coffee shop on my day off, I watched the manager pick a colored marker and add my name to the chalkboard.
I was thrilled.
Okay, so learning how to make espresso drinks isn’t the pinnacle of success in my world, but why not pause to celebrate the little victories in life? Can you……
- Finally make Red Velvet Cake that’s as tasty as your grandmother’s? Good for you!
- Change the oil in your car without help? Or better yet, change a tire? Bravo!
- Find your way through downtown Chicago without making a single U-turn or eliciting a blaring horn blast from an impatient taxi driver? Way to go!
- Finish a five-mile jog without pausing for a rest? Atta girl!
Little victories do matter. Maybe they won’t merit a headline in the local news or a chapter in your memoir, but they can be markers of progress in a life that only you can live.
In honor of the U.S. Women Soccer Team’s world championship, here’s a thought:
In the same week I learned to make espresso drinks, I got the hang of creating frozen drinks. And, I showed up at 5:30 a.m. on one day to help open the coffee shop and then stayed until 9:30 p.m. on another day to help close it.
I also had a meaningful and productive conversation with one of my sons, finished a cleaning project that had been haunting me and completed a demanding government permit form that sat way too long in my computer.
We won’t talk about the things I didn’t accomplish.
Life is made up of highs and lows, successes and failures. We’re all way too aware of our failures. Take time to celebrate a few victories.