Rethinking Celebrations: Party Like it Matters


Rethinking Celebrations: Party Like it Matters

I woke up early because I have too much on my mind to sleep. At 3 a.m. I listened to, “E.B. White on Dogs.” At 4:30 I wandered to my writing chair and began this.

Party like it matters. Celebrations accomplish three things.

Celebrations tell people what matters. Image of hands holding sparklers.

#1. Celebrations honor something important.

The Fourth of July respects the Declaration of Independence.

John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail describing his vision of Independence Day celebrations. (7/2/1776)

“It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations …

I am well aware of the toil and blood and treasure, that it will cost us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the gloom I can see the rays of ravishing light and glory.”

Read the letter here:

What do you intentionally honor?

#2. Celebrations tell people what matters.

You get what you honor.

Don’t tell people to work hard, revere the efforts of industrious people. Yes, toot horns when projects are completed successfully. Just as important, acknowledge the habits and practices that cause achievements.

In my research, I’ve found that adults have many ways to tell themselves “I did a bad job” and very few ways of saying “I did a good job.” BJ Fogg

What do your team members think is important?

#3. Celebrations solidify culture.

Culture strengthens belonging. I’ve worked with some organizations where people brag about their founders. They share the same words when describing their company.

You build the future when you strengthen culture.

What words or stories come to mind when you think of your organization? Family?

Something to think about:

When Celebrating Demotivates

How to Make Goals Come to Life


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