Words Matter, Now More Than Ever: Easy Ways to Encourage and Uplift Others

 

Sign of Encouragement
Supporting the Neighborhood and Small Business

 

Your words of encouragement to a loved one, a friend or colleague can mean a lot to them. In fact, in times of despair and gloom, your words may be the most important things for them to cling to. Don’t shy away from expressing hope and inspiration to people around you. You may be in need of them at some point in your life as well.

Kindness starts with one person, in this case two people.  I am fortunate to be friends with the husband and wife that took the time and spent the money to have the BE BRAVE, BE KIND sign made and placed near their driveway to encourage their neighbors. Always thoughtful of others, my friend said, “We were so happy how it turned out, the company we hired nailed what I wanted.” With this gesture, they supported both the neighborhood and a grateful small business owner who told them, “You really way overpaid me.” Whether you are a neighbor, parent, friend, co-worker, company executive, or someone that others look up to for any reason, words hold immense power and impact. That’s why it’s critical that your words build others up.

 

“Keep your thoughts positive because your thoughts become your words. Keep your words positive because your words become your behavior. Keep your behavior positive because your behavior becomes your habits. Keep your habits positive because your habits become your values. Keep your values positive because your values become your destiny.” – Mahatma Gandhi

 

There are plenty of opportunities to provide support to others. Here are a few for you to consider:

  1. Personal Check-ins

Let others know you care about the things that are important to them. Take the time to learn about their family, interests, fears, challenges, and goals and provide them with the opportunity to talk about it.

Pick a different person every day and send them a quick email or text to check in with them. It’s not as personal as a phone call, but it is the thought that counts. Even if you make an effort to do this just once a week for one person, notice how your connections respond to the encouragement.

  1. Add Words of Encouragement to Introductions

Undoubtedly, you will have an opportunity to bring people into your circle of friends and influence. When you introduce someone, add a few words of acknowledgement for their abilities, experience and accomplishments. This is an expression of appreciation for the specific value that person offers.

Promote a friend or acquaintance for the things they do. Share how they have helped you or why they are “special”.  It’s encourages people when they are personally recognized and supported.

  1. Celebrate the Important “Moments”

Acknowledge the victories and accomplishments of others with a personal note, a congratulatory phone call or virtual card. Nothing is too small or insignificant. If appropriate, share their success with others.

  1. Pray for Others

Let people know that you’re praying for them. Tell them what specifically you’re praying for them so they know you understand their needs. It makes your words of encouragement more sincere and concrete. Don’t forget to check back with them to see how they are doing.

  1. Tell People the Way They Have Encouraged You

Encouragement works two ways. Let them know how much you appreciated their encouragement and how it made a difference in your life.

  1. Acknowledge Positive Treatment of Others

Recognize someone for the positive way they treat others. If you have noticed that someone has treated others with sensitivity, kindness, compassion, generosity, etc., mention it and let them know you noticed. Not long ago I did this at the hairdresser. I complimented the supervisor on the kind way she interacted with the stylists she was training. I gave her specific examples of the behavior I observed that was impressive to me.  My comments took her by surprise, she was thankful I took the time to say something.

  1. Support Others On Social Media

If you are on social media, use it to encourage others. Whether your connections are celebrating an anniversary, a job promotion, the start of a new business, or dealing with a challenge, take time to comment on their updates with sincere words of encouragement. It’s not the number of people that respond that is important, but, the genuineness of the responses received.

  1. Encourage Strangers

You can be the one to brighten a person’s day. You never know what is going on in someone’s life. Make a point to positively engage others. Ask them, “How is your day going?” then listen before you respond. A kind word from you at the right time could make a positive impact on the rest of their day…..and yours.

  1. Demonstrate Acts of Kindness

Extend neighborly kindness and encouragement. Support an elderly neighbor, rake leaves, take their garbage to the street each week and return the empty can after pick-up. Share fruit from your fruit trees and vegetables from your garden.

  1. Encourage the Youth

Listen to young people, encourage them to talk, and let them know you care about their concerns and value their  opinions. We can all learn something from children and young adults.

  1. Send Gift Cards

For your friends out of work or with small businesses that are suffering, send a special gift card or send customers their way.  Make sure the gift card is for something they need or could use during the rough time they are experiencing.

  1. Create a Culture of Encouragement

At work, at home, even at the grocery store, words matter. Your words can have a profound impact on the people in your life. Something that seems of no consequence to you can lift another person’s spirits.

Let me hear from you. What are you currently doing to encourage others? What are some other ways you can offer encouragement? Who can you encourage right now?

Stay Healthy and Tapped In to What Life Has to Offer…………

Dr. Myra

Women’s Self-Empowerment Strategist

Author of Empowering Yourself to Embrace Change, Experience Leaves Clues, and the Upcoming Book: TAP IN®: Elevating Women’s Self-Empowerment

 

A Dynamic and engaging speaker, Dr. Myra Hubbard is available for Keynote Presentations, Conferences, Retreats, Training, and Consulting engagements. She can be reached at myrahub@aol.com or 707-481-2268. http://www.tapin2success.com

What Is Your Love Language?

 

Free-Valentine

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

It is February and we are well into the new year. Around Valentine’s Day we tend to think about how we can express our love to those close to us, as well as individuals in our personal network of support. Most often we search the racks for the perfect card to express our feelings or purchase a gift to celebrate the occasion.

But wait, before you purchase your gift. According to Gary Chapman in his book, The Five Love Languages, he identifies ways to express and experience love. He calls these ways of expression “love languages” in which each person has one primary and one secondary language.

The five languages identified are:

1. Gifts

Giving gifts that are meaningful to the person you are expressing love to.

2. Quality Time

Spending quality time together and sharing experiences can create fond memories. The time together doesn’t have to be an expensive trip to Paris. A gift of time can be priceless.

3. Words of Affirmation

Words of affirmation means expressing affection for your love one through spoken affection, praise or appreciation.

Telling your significant other, “I love you”, “thank you, honey” and “I appreciate you” are examples of affirming words.

4. Acts of Service

Acts of service involves taking actions rather than expressing words that are used to show and receive love. I recently made my BFF (Best Friends Forever), a pot of homemade chicken soup when she told me she was sick with a cold. She does so much for me and I wanted to do something for her. In other words, communicate in her love language.

5. Physical touch

It is amazing how much you can express or feel from a gentle touch, a hug, a kiss. A touch that says, “I love you”, a hug that says “I care”, or a kiss that says “I am here for you”.

Based on your personal experience, would you add more love languages?

Chapman suggests that to discover another person’s love language, observe the way they express love to you, analyze what they complain about most frequently and listen to what they request from you most often.

Chapman says people tend to naturally give love in the way that they prefer to receive it, and better communication between couples can be accomplished when you can demonstrate caring to the other person in the love language the recipient understands and appreciates.

An example would be if your husband’s love language is acts of service, he may be confused when he does the laundry for you and you don’t perceive that as an act of love, viewing it as simply performing household duties. You could have this view because the love language you may appreciate and understand is verbal affirmation that he loves you. You may be thinking, you can’t remember the last time he said “I love you”.

You may try to use what you value, words of affirmation, to express your love for him, which he would not value as much as you do.

If you understand your partner’s love language, by mowing the lawn for him, he perceives it in his love language as an act of expressing your love for him; likewise, if he tells you he loves you, you may value that as an act of love.

I believe we can express love every day and can add compassion, kindness, forgiveness, and humor to the list. I recall talking to a woman that had been going through hard times with her husband. When I asked her what it was about him that makes you stay, her response was, “he makes me laugh”.

No doubt your love one is a significant part of your network of support. How we demonstrate our gratitude and love for members of our personal network is through meaningful gifts, quality time, acts of kinds, words of encouragement, and a loving hug of appreciation.

This maybe a good time to take a minute to reflect and have a heart-to-heart conversation with your significant other to determine if you are “speaking” the “right” love language.

Let me know your thoughts.

Stay Tapped In to the Love Life Has to Offer……

Dr. Myra

Women’s Self-Empowerment Strategist

Author of the Upcoming Book: TAP IN: Elevating Women’s Self-Empowerment

A Dynamic and engaging speaker, Dr. Myra Hubbard is available for Keynote Presentations, Conferences, Retreats, Training, and Consulting engagements. She can be reached at myrahub@aol.com or 707-481-2268.

 

 

Tres Amigas (3 Friends): 10 Benefits of Investing in Friendship

 

TapIN Logo

 

Have you ever experienced a day like this?  You and your BFF (Best Friends Forever) or in this case BFFs haven’t seen each other for a couple of months.  Everyone has been so busy with “life”, you know from experience that friendships can take a back seat to other priorities and commitments, such as work and family.  You have been texting back and forth to keep in touch and finally schedule a face-to-face “meet-up” together.  One of you identifies a movie to see, another finds an inexpensive place to eat, and the third suggests going to a coffee shop to cap off the evening.

You find a spot to chat in the coffee shop.  You share pictures, update each other on what’s happening in each other’s lives and before you know it, you hear, “Excuse me ladies, we hate to interrupt, but, we are closing.”  You didn’t notice, one person had a broom in his hand, they had cleaned the coffee equipment and it looked like they were finished cleaning up the entire shop. The three of you friends, Tres Amigas, were the only people left.

Networks of Support

What happened to the time?  Why didn’t you notice the things happening around you?  Here is my take on what was going on….

You were TAPPED IN to a key component of your Network of Support. In my TAP IN model above, the N stands for Network of Support, and SOCIAL is one of the 5 key networks to Develop, Cultivate and Maintain. It is not the quantity of friends you have in the Social network, it is the QUALITY of friendships you have in your life.

What are the benefits of friendships?

According to the Mayo Clinic, friendships can have a major impact on your health and well-being and play a significant role in promoting your overall health. Individuals with strong social support have a reduced risk of many significant health problems, including depression and high blood pressure. Studies have even found that older people with a rich social life are likely to live longer than their peers that do not have quality friendships.

Friends can:

  1. Increase your sense of belonging and purpose
  2. Provide support when you try new things
  3. Encourage you to follow your Passion and achieve your Goals
  4. Help you celebrate good times and provide support during bad times
  5. Boost your happiness and reduce your stress
  6. Prevent loneliness and give you a chance to offer needed companionship
  7. Improve your self-confidence and self-worth
  8. Help you cope with traumas, such as divorce, illness, job loss or the death of a loved one
  9. Encourage you to change or avoid unhealthy lifestyle habits
  10. Make you laugh and encourage you to have fun

 

The Investment

Many of us find it hard to develop new friendships or keep up with existing ones. Developing and maintaining quality friendships takes time and effort. The enjoyment and support friendship can provide, however, makes the investment worthwhile.

As I mentioned earlier, quality counts more than quantity. While it’s good to cultivate a diverse network of people in your life, you also want to nurture a few truly close friends, amigas, who will be there for you through the test of time.

Let me hear about your supportive friendships, I am always interested in your thoughts.

“Stay Tapped In to the wonderful things life has to offer.”

Dr. Myra

 

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