Tools: The art of rewarding yourself
In my book I mention that its important to reward yourself once you complete a goal successfully. That doesn't mean you do it perfectly inside a single sprint--the point of a sprint is to learn from it--but if you have an outcome you want to achieve by all means have a reward planned.
During the teleclass I held after the release of my book I mentioned I would be learning Japanese in order to make my trip to Japan more enjoyable. The goal I set for February was to memorize hiragana and katakana (two elements of written Japanese) as well as to complete a recorded program that will teach me pronunciation and some basic language. This is all in preparation for using Skype in March to start conversing with native speakers. I plan to reward myself for successful completion by extending my trip by a couple of days so I can enjoy the Studio Ghibli Museum in Tokyo as well as spend time in some of the flea markets (also, RAMEN!).
Now, I could just give this to myself and call it a day but it would lack a certain something--the element of celebration. Its the sort of thing you give yourself that is connected to your goal that will remind you of what you just went through.
As I wander the streets of Tokyo and Kyoto I look forward to ordering my own food, asking for directions and the pleasant confusion of people when someone so obviously アメリカンの greets them in the local language.
I realize my reward isn't everyone's cup of tea but that's the point--its special to me. The thing you choose should be special to you, chosen by you and not given to you unless you know in your heart you satisfied the spirit of your goal.
I'm all for giving myself treats and indulgences but my goal rewards have clear boundaries around them. They mean something and stand in as potent reminders to myself that I am absolutely capable of accomplishing whatever it is I set out to do.