This is my 27th post, not a particularly significant integer except that this year I will be celebrating my 27th birthday. Also today we celebrated my Dad's birthday and later this evening the birthday of a friend of mine. I got to thinking a lot about what it means to celebrate something. And like a total dork I even looked up the actual definition.
Ahem... Celebrate: verb; to observe a day or commemorate an event with ceremonies or festivities; to make known publicly; to praise widely.
Of course generally when we think of celebrating we think of holidays, religious ceremonies, birthdays, anniversaries. And those things are important, of course, to celebrate. When we honor such events we show respect and recognition for the role they play in our lives. But it is also important to celebrate the little things. And, as part of celebrating is to praise and observe, to seek opportunities to praise and observe those around us. I used to be quite stingy with my compliments, thinking people would think I'm weird to compliment them out of nowhere. It even pained me to think of complimenting someone I envied or didn't like, as if I was losing some kind of prideful ground by saying something nice to them, even if it was genuine. But then I realized that among the people I avoided and the people I gravitated toward, there was one powerful distinction: the people I gravitated toward were generous with sincere praise and positive comments. This isn't to say we should go around complimenting everyone we come into contact with willy-nilly, but what would the world be like if each of us kept more of the mean things we think in our heads, and said more of the nice things we think out loud?
“Celebrate the happiness that friends are always giving, make every day a holiday and celebrate just living!” - Amanda Bradley