Celebrate With Grace

I am a Survivor. I have been one for as long as I can remember, and like the other 20 million Americans or so who live below the poverty line, there is no escaping it. But this Thanksgiving will be different than any before – thanks to you! You made me feel someone cared enough about my struggles that they were willing to make an impact with their own platform just through donations of cryptocurrency (Bitcoin).

“Celebrating Grace Hymnal” is a hymnal that was written to celebrate the arrival of the baby Jesus.

Did you miss Part 1? It may be found here.

The Green Bay Packers and the Dallas Cowboys battled for the NFL Championship on Lambeau Field on December 31, 1967. Temperatures lingered about 13 degrees below zero, the grass was as hard as rock, officials’ whistles became lodged in their lips, and members of the halftime band were rushed to the hospital for hypothermia. It was still the coldest NFL game ever.

These competing teams battled it out for sixty minutes, with each member digging deep to summon the strength to face both the cold and the other squad. The Cowboys were up 17-14 with 16 seconds remaining in the game, and the Packers were in possession of the ball. Bart Starr accomplished a quarterback sneak with offensive tackle Jerry Kramer on 3rd and goal, providing him the block he needed to go into the end zone and win the game. The Packers had advanced to the Super Bowl for the second time.

That block has been dubbed “NFL history’s greatest.” Kramer, on the other hand, did not dance about or grab a Sharpie from his sock to sign a signature on the spot; instead, he quietly walked off the field.

There was no need for such displays of emotion; the joy of a hard-fought victory was sufficient.

How to Celebrate Gracefully

Last time, we discussed how to lose gracefully.

It’s a challenging task, but in some respects, it’s less difficult than celebrating with grace. It’s difficult to find a balance between really enjoying your triumph and not contributing to your opponent’s agony or coming off as a smug braggart when you win a significant victory or accomplish a notable feat. Here are some tips on how to tread that fine line.

Is it better to rejoice in public or in private?

One of the most common issues individuals have when it comes to celebrating with grace is whether they should show your admiration to others or keep it to themselves.

The answer to that question is contingent on the nature of the achievement and if you are in direct competition with others.

When an achievement divides individuals into “classes,” such as grades, wage hikes, promotions, and try-outs, it’s best to keep the celebration secret (to be enjoyed by yourself and close family and friends). So, instead of a yell and a fist pumping when the instructor delivers you back an A+ paper, simply smile and put the paper away. This logic holds true the more competitive something is–which is why no one ever spoke about their GPA or rank in law school.

In these cases, rubbing your victory in the faces of your opponents will not make your triumph any more real–it is only an effort to tickle your ego and will likely lead to rivalry among your peers.

Of course, there are times when celebrating in front of your opponents is acceptable, such as during an award ceremony or a sporting event, since the competition is the point of these events, rather than being unsaid.


Use care, especially when utilizing social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, even when your triumph may be legitimately celebrated publicly. These platforms have made news sharing so simple that some people are unsure what constitutes true news. Most people sincerely care about what’s going on in your life and your achievements; they simply don’t consider having a fantastic bowel movement to be a distinct accomplishment.

Appreciate those who made it possible.

Even when a win is credited only to him, the modest man recognizes that there were those who assisted him along the road. The top player expresses gratitude to his teammates, while the boss expresses gratitude to his staff.

In general, express thanks.

When the victor behaves as though he is entitled to the success he has found, the celebrations come off as arrogant. The dignified man is proud of the effort he put in to get to where he is, but he will always be glad that he was in the right place at the right time and that a series of events conspired in his favor.

Recognize the loser.

Shake your fallen opponent’s hand. If you’re chatting, concentrate on the game rather than the conclusion. “In the usual exchange of pleasantries at game’s finish,” says an old Esquire etiquette book, “the good loser hails the winner on his talent and the good winner sympathizes with the loser on his luck.”

Don’t scoff at your triumph.

The guy who downplays his victory might be just as annoying as the one who lords it over you. While behaving as if you didn’t deserve to win or as if it’s not a big deal may seem to be the “nice” thing to do or a way to divert attention, it just serves to make the victor look even better–”Not only did he win, he’s so above it all he doesn’t even care!” It also adds insult to injury for your opponent. As a loser, I want to know that I was a worthy adversary and that you really wanted to win, because I did!

In 1970, when George C. Scott won an Oscar for his depiction of General George S. Patton in the film of the same name, he became the first person to decline an Academy Award, claiming that he was not in competition with other performers and that the event was a “two-hour meat parade.” This unexpected action drew even more attention to Scott (he was on the cover of Time for a few weeks), and it conveyed a message to the other candidates that not only did they lose the award, but they were losers for even worrying about winning!

Participate in the benefits.

When a gambler wins, he often tips the dealer. It’s a positive karma situation. Spread the love when something positive occurs to you. Take all of your pals out for drinks on you if you receive a nice promotion at work.


Don’t make the “modest brag” mistake.

Some individuals use the “humble brag” to bridge the gap between wanting to celebrate something and not wanting to brag. The modest brag is when you’re really bragging about something but attempt to cover it up with a complaint or a self-deprecating remark.

On social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, humble boasting is extremely prevalent. The Twitter account Humblebrag has created a list of examples:

A list of comments.Humble brags are so common on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook because people sometimes use them to create a character and control how others see them. A modest brag is often used online to communicate “news” that isn’t actually news at all, but serves to demonstrate to others that you’re doing something amazing and that you’re the kind of person that does X.

It’s important to communicate the news of your triumph straight out, whether you’re sharing it in person or online. You may be concerned about coming across as arrogant, but it’s better to come across as arrogant than to look as someone who is arrogant while attempting to disguise it. Duplicity irritates people more than pride.

The ideal guideline to follow here is one that will serve you well in all aspects of your life: if you feel compelled to hide what you’re doing, even if it’s only a little, it’s a clue you shouldn’t be doing it at all.

Resist the urge to ask, “How do you like me now?”

It’s quite tempting to rub it in people’s faces when you do something that they all believed you could do. “Haters, how do you like me now?” And, without a question, talking about the roadblocks you encountered on your route to the top is acceptable, particularly when it acts as motivation for others. It’s fascinating to learn that a successful start-up was turned down by investors 30 times before becoming a billion-dollar company. But this shouldn’t be the center of your celebration; otherwise, you’ll come off as bitter and your reputation will suffer.

Michael Jordan’s Hall of Fame acceptance speech is Exhibit A. Jordan might have delivered a speech similar to those given by John Stockton and David Robinson the night he was inducted. Their remarks were full of thanks for everyone who had assisted them during their successful careers. Instead, Jordan used his statement to blame his teammates for freezing him out of the 1985 All-Star game when he was a rookie, the college coach who picked other players for the Sports Illustrated cover, and the Bulls general manager for declaring that teams, not individuals, win championships. He even flew out the now-grown guy who had been kicked off the varsity squad for his sophomore year by his high school coach, just so he could point to him and tell his former coach, “I wanted to make sure you understood: You made a mistake, brother.” “Haha—you people were mistaken!” was his message to everyone. But Jordan’s record made it plain; demonstrating that he was still affected by such slights made him seem petty rather than gracious.


Continue not to penalize the loser.

It’s not necessary to kick an opponent while he’s down; winning is enough.

When General Lee surrendered at Appomattox and General Grant informed his soldiers, the men began firing their guns in celebration. “The battle is ended, the rebels are once again our countrymen, and the greatest way to display our happiness will be to refrain from any such demonstrations,” Grant said.

On his way back to Washington, D.C., he also opted not to pass through Richmond because he didn’t want to do “anything at such a moment that would add to [the South’s] anguish.”

Some people are unable to be helped.

It’s gentlemanly to try to avoid coming off as Smugly McSmugs Alot and to rejoice gracefully. But bear in mind that no matter how well you manage your success, some people will always think you’re arrogant. They’re envious of you and are transferring their sentiments onto you. Don’t be concerned.

With Dignity, Lose, and Grace, Celebrate

A men holding hands and rising arms and woman's on stage.In contemporary culture, the capacity to lose with dignity and rejoice with elegance is uncommon, yet there are still instances of gentlemanliness. Take, for example, Delaware’s “Return Day.”

The custom of Return Day began in 1791, when Georgetown became the county seat of Delaware. On Election Day, residents of Sussex County had to go there to cast their votes. People returned to Georgetown two days later, after the ballots had been counted, to hear the outcome. The reading of the winners was accompanied by carnival-like celebrations.

The custom is still followed today. Businesses and schools shut on the Thursday following Election Day, and Delawareans from all across the state descend to Georgetown for the Return Day celebrations. An ox roast, a hatchet-throwing competition between village mayors, and a one-of-a-kind procession are all part of the festivities.

A men in campaign on stage holding ax and laughing. In horse-drawn carriages that go across town, the victors and losers of each political contest put aside their animosity from the election and sit together. The chairmen of the Republican and Democratic parties in Sussex County then gather to actually bury the hatchet. Each of them takes a hatchet handle and plunges it into a box of sand with the other.

I believe it is a wonderful tradition. Because it represents the reality that no matter how little or huge the contest, life moves on, everyone of us may lose with dignity and rejoice with elegance.





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Grace is a virtue that is very important in life. It’s the ability to accept what you have and grow with what you have. Celebrate with grace by growing in grace.

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