Pumping yourself up after a big win can feel a little awkward. You want to acknowledge good work, but you don’t want to feel arrogant. It’s that tricky balance of quietly reveling in a job well done without coming off as … well, a jerk.
Despite that awkwardness, getting credit for your work gives your brain good feelings and helps you accomplish more. Companies use praise to try to boost productivity and even revenue, and experts say that the psychological impact of keeping a positive view of your accomplishments can decrease stress and encourage better habits.
Unfortunately, not all praise is rewarded equally. Studies show that in the workplace, women, and especially women of color, are often given less credit and assigned important but undervalued projects, meaning less recognition come promotion time.
But even if you’re bad at taking a compliment, or you’re not getting external recognition, you can still enjoy major psychological benefits from celebrating your achievements on your own, according to Dr. Teresa Amabile, a professor at Harvard Business School and co-author of “The Progress Principle.”
“They don’t have to be big breakthroughs or huge successes,” she said. “Even small wins can lead people to feel terrific.”
Here’s how to embrace the power of those small wins and get comfortable taking credit — even if you’re giving the kudos to yourself.
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