Progress: The Psychology Of Success

When it comes to parenting and building effective relationships with your children, I believe the psychology of success lies largely in what I call, ‘celebrating progress’.

Celebrating progress is an exciting and, more importantly, effective concept I’d love to share with you. When practised regularly, you’ll learn how to stay motivated even when the achievements are small. After all, they’re still achievements!

The great thing about celebrating progress is it’s such a simple concept and something we’re all looking for, in all ranges of situations.

Not just in parenting, but in all areas of our lives, as long as we’re making some progress, we are on track, and our motivation remains.

Progress is the name of the game!

I share this concept in my book On Track Parenting. Parenting skills aren’t taught, so it’s normal to feel at a loss from time to time. On Track Parenting is a life-changing book for any parents keen to create stronger relationships and have more influence with their kids. It’s packed with tools, tips, and strategies to help boost your child/parent relationship.

There are four steps I love to share with people on how to implement the concept of progress into your life, and here I’m going to share with you step number two, which is that as long as we’re making progress, we’re always on track. And if we’re on track, we can celebrate our progress. Consistently celebrating our progress provides that self-motivation to keep moving forward.

University, Goal Setting and Motivation

How I Made the Connection Between Progress and Motivation

For me, I realised this many years ago when I was studying. I knew that my main goal, my motivation, was to finish my degree, but what about all those goals I needed to achieve before I reached that main goal? I knew about goal setting, but initially, my study motivation was somewhat lacking because I made the mistake of thinking I needed to wait until I completed the degree before I celebrated. Luckily, it didn’t take me long to figure out that it just did not make sense to do that!

In essence, life is about enjoying the journey, so the whole concept to ‘celebrate the progress’ really rang true for me. The same applies to parenting, and in fact, almost anything.

I quickly learned how important it is to look for ways to celebrate the progress when you achieve your goals, no matter how small.

For parents, the particular example of celebrating your studying progress is an important piece of information you can share with your kids and may assist with their study motivation.

After my ‘aha moment,’ whenever I submitted an assignment or every time I passed an exam, I knew I was making progress. My self-motivation sky-rocketed! It also meant that I was on track in terms of moving forward towards accomplishing my primary goal – to complete my degree.

A key point around celebrating the progress:

Any progress, no matter how small, is better than no progress.

Let’s take exercise as an example. You’ve decided to commit to an exercise program, you’re determined to achieve your goals, and you want to get fit. Using the concept, ‘some is better than none,’ if you only have time to walk for 15 minutes, well 15 minutes is better than 10 minutes. If you only have time to walk for 10 minutes, that’s better than 5 minutes! If 20 push-ups is your limit (for now!), that’s better than 15 push-ups, which is better than 10!

And remember, the ‘some is better than none’ concept can apply to almost anything, including parenting.

Focusing on your child’s progress is so important for parents. We’ve all been frustrated trying to get things done when the kids are around or trying to get the kids to listen and respond without constant nagging on your part!

How to stay motivated?

By celebrating the progress, you’re rewarding yourself for your hard work and recognising even your smallest parenting achievements. Whatever your goal, by reducing it into smaller achievements, you can identify those achievements and realise you’re making positive steps to achieve your ultimate goal.

By focusing on our children’s progress, rather than noticing what they’re not doing, we start to see the improvements and interact with them on a more personal, positive level.


As long as you’re making progress, you’re always on track. So, give yourself a pat on the back – a reward. Celebrate!

It’s not difficult to find ways to celebrate the progress. As a family, at the end of the work week, we’ll go out to our favourite restaurant or find something fun to do. It’s our way of celebrating the progress. Your celebration doesn’t have to be huge, just some type of reward you’ll appreciate – buy yourself a coffee, take the kids out for a yummy afternoon snack after school, or play a fun family board game.

By the way, I provide lots of ideas and strategies in my book, On Track Parenting (page 206), on how to implement this concept of progress. If you’d like to know more, you can get your own copy by clicking this link.

So, take that concept on board, look for the progress that you’re making in your life and in your parenting, and find ways to celebrate it!

May you have an on track day!


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