What a phony smile… Why do people want him? How has he accomplished anything? It’s ME they need. I’m the one who should be successful, not him. What a joke.” This was my inner dialogue when I heard about other people’s success. Like a prima donna, I seethed with jealousy and couldn’t stand to hear about people doing better than me.
But all the hating got me nowhere. So I thought about who I was really mad at…it wasn’t the successful people I raged at. When I got more serious about succeeding, I channeled that useless envy into accepting myself.
I practiced self-acceptance with a journal, through affirmations, and by encouraging myself—especially when I failed. Then something weird happened. I started feeling happy for other people’s success. Without a hint of irony, I congratulated people on their hard work, and I applauded their success with my best wishes. It felt good. I felt more successful doing it.
“Embrace your uniqueness. Time is much too short to be living someone else’s life.” – Kobi Yamada
My writing career caught fire at the same time. I was published on sites that I’d only dreamt of, and whose authors I had cussed for doing things that the egotistical me still hadn’t. Congratulating others started a positive feedback loop. The more I accepted myself, the more I celebrated other people’s success and the more I celebrated their success, the more success I achieved. Now that I look back, I could’ve hacked my growth curve by celebrating others’ success as a daily ritual.
Here are six reasons why you should start applauding successful entrepreneurs today:
1. It conditions you for your own success
Feeling good for someone else’s success helps you generate the same feelings you need for your own accomplishments. So put yourself in the other’s shoes. Revel in their accomplishments; think of all the hard work that went into it. Celebrate their success and know that soon you’ll experience the same thing for yourself. Apply the good feelings to your visions for a brighter future.
2. You’ll transcend yourself
Everyone knows that to actually succeed, you need to be part of something bigger. But most people are kept from that bigger something by wanting all the focus for themselves. it’s an ego issue.
Through celebrating others, you’ll practice the selflessness it takes to let go of your tiny shell and leap into the ocean of success that comes through serving others. Cheer your fellow entrepreneurs. Feel their success. Let go of your want for recognition and accept that you’ll get it when you help enough other people.
3. It generates abundance
When people think food is scarce, they don’t want to share. When people think success is scarce, they’ll soon eat themselves up with envy than dish out some praise. But that issue of scarcity can be fixed in an instant.
Create your own abundance by praising your successful compadres. Be excited for their achievements. Even if it hurts, celebrate and appreciate the success of your peers. Then do it again and again. Do it until you realize that there is and always has been enough success to go around.
Don’t worry if you’re not in the same room, or even the same network, just feel gratitude for their accomplishments. Be excited for them. Practice those feelings for other people enough and you’ll step into your vision of success without having realized it—as if it were the most natural thing in the world.
“Not what we have But what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance” – Epicurus
4. It kills the ego
Egotism is the root of all business failures. Some people blow their heads up so big that they experience a temporary bubble of success, but the bubble always pops. If you want the real deal, you need to destroy the ego. Kill it with kindness.
You can fast-track ego-annihilation by focusing on the good done by others. When you feel a twinge of neediness, or jealousy, or desolation, just zoom out of “poor-me mode” and force your focus onto something useful—like other people’s accomplishment.
Feel good about and for them. Then transfer those feelings to your own visions of success, to the accomplishments you know you’ll reach.
5. You’ll extend your network
People like people who make them feel good. That’s how networks are grown. You can expand your own by spending time each day feeling good for other people and sharing your praise for their work. It’s as simple as this: “Hey, I’m super excited for your success—it must feel great. Thanks for motivating me to strive for more, and to be bigger.”
Follow their articles. Join the conversation, and add value whenever you can. This makes people feel good about your presence, which will lead to more connections, more invites, and more opportunities to do cool stuff with the people who are making things happen.
6. It helps you accept yourself
I learned how to praise others by an intense self-acceptance practice. But it works both ways. Kind of like smiling can make you feel happy. If you make a ritual of praising others, it’s only a matter of time before you’re accepting and praising yourself, and doing it enough to take your success to the next level.
This list could go on and on, but is there a single reason to withhold your enthusiasm for other’s achievements? I haven’t found one. So make the celebration of other people’s achievements a daily ritual. Your success and happiness depend on it.