The benefits of encouragement and the need for criticism. It is easy task to balance negative reactions and positive actions toward our family, friends, coworkers and especially those facing a difficult recovery.
Our relationships would benefit from more positive and encouraging interactions. This also seems to be true when dealing the Post-Traumatic Stress. Our minds tend to already be drawn to the negative. We often already know how we are messing up. However, sometimes we need to hear it anyway.
What ratio of negative to positive is best? In this episode we explore this complex subject.
Build off the positive. Even if it is difficult to find the positive, keep looking until you find the positive.
It starts with our own attitude of gratitude. How critical are you of your own thoughts, words and actions? We need to show ourselves grace.
Doctors, professional books, and even those close to us will sometimes unintentionally place a limit on our potential. They may be well intended. Sometimes they are correct. There are things that we may need to accept.
But … That is not for others to determine on their own! Consider Jason’s story. The VA was willing to sustain him in an institution. When he decided to go home with his parents their books determined that he was as recovered as he could be and cut off the rehab resources.
Jason, however, was still progressing. So his family continues to pay for rehab services out of pocket. The VA was willing to spend huge amounts on institutionalizing him but not to pay a much less amount for continued rehab services.
We understand that some people stop progressing in their rehabilitation and there needs to be checks and balances. But a formula should not be the determining factor. We are all unique and have unique situations.
Are you facing a physical injury, Post-Traumatic Stress, relationship issues, work problems or you are being told that it cannot be done? Don’t accept that on face value. Don’t blindly rely on the formula.
Be wise and listen to the counsel of others. There are some limits we may have to accept; but not without a fight. Not without first thinking outside the box!
Watch Jason’s story as captured by the Wounded Warrior Project
You can possess all the necessary knowledge of how to accomplish a task and not follow through to completion. Even with the right knowledge we often need is some encouragement. Sometimes we need just a little and other times we need a whole lot.
We may hold the need for encouragement in common. However, each of us responds differently to different kinds of encouragement. Different circumstances, such as training, family, or work can call for different kinds of encouragement. Words, gifts, awards, smiles, quality time, express gratitude and confidence are just a few tools we can use to encourage others.
Perhaps I can speak best from my own experience. What have I found most encouraging over the years? [NOTE: I am not real comfortable sharing this kind of info in such a public space.]
Truthful, sincere acknowledgment of something I have done or said that has made a difference.
For me it is important that the words, award or whatever the acknowledgement, must be objectively truthful. Platitudes or untrue statements do little to nothing to encourage me.
We should try and understand how those in our own lives receive and respond to encouragement. A few encouragement suggestions:
Experiment – What encourages you may not encourage someone else.
Smile more often.
Listen. Really listen.
Give thanks – expressed in words, deeds, and acknowledgement. Be specific! Even when the outcome is not what you or they may desire, give thanks for their quality efforts.
Express your confidence in someone’s ability to accomplish whatever they are facing. Sincerity is key!
Perhaps our expression of gratitude goes along with encouraging others. What do you think? What encourages you? (Leave a comment–link is on the top of the post.)
After one year and over 31,000,000 views this video is still inspiring. Be encouraged! Each of us has a lot to contribute to others. This thee minute video is not a major Hollywood production. It does not star a famous actor. It was not produced by one of the industries greats. Yet it is impacting the world.
We may never directly reach 31 million people. But we can reach someone in our little part of the world.
Encourage someone today. You may never know just how much they needed that encouragement.