Eight Ideas for Self Encouragement All Year Round
Who has not encountered discouragement with no apparent way to overcome the challenges facing him or her?
I’ve been there and know from experience how debilitating life can be until the mood changes from discouraged to encouraged.
The lovely Devika Primić, writer on HubPages (DDE), posed the following questions soliciting ideas for encouragement:
“How have you been encouraged? . . . What made you feel encouragement through all times?”
There is not always going to be other people there to offer encouragement. Those people who are only able to achieve things when cheered on by other people will not be able to do much in life.— alcoholrehab.com
Glad you asked, DDE. My response favors self encouragement because the philosophy stated above is true of all life's situations. Hopefully by sharing these eight ideas which work for me, others will be encouraged; and encouragement usually boomerangs.
(1) Change Position
For many years when I lived abroad, people asked me what I missed most about the Caribbean. My response was that at home I could see the ocean from my front yard and the hills from my back yard. When I left, houses were far apart in my neighborhood.
Upon my return, I am greatly discouraged to find that new houses block my view, and there is nothing I could do about it. To encourage myself, I visualize the rooftop deck that I wish for; and until that becomes a reality, I intentionally head for a hill-ocean view during my morning walks. From there, I inhale a full day’s amount of encouragement.
Sometimes all it takes to initiate self encouragement is to change position—literal or metaphorical.
For Self Encouragement
- Encouraging Quotes - Words of Encouragement To Lift Your Spirits
No matter what you’re going through in life, here are some encouraging quotes that will hopefully give you a little boost in your struggles.
(2) Self Talk
In my role as my mother’s caretaker, meaningful conversation is scarce. I talk inspiration to myself. Often, I fall back on appropriate quotes from my favorite authors, promises from the Bible, or proverbial wise sayings which I personalize and keep handy.
One of my favorite self encouragement passages is personalized from an Old Testament passage:
I am like a tree planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. I am not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. My leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit. (Jeremiah 17: 8)
(3) Sing the Clouds Away
Listening to a good song lifts the spirits; and singing the right song keeps the spirit lifted. It has nothing to do with the quality of voice.
“Keep a song in my heart” was part of my Pathfinder Club creed in my early childhood. A song in the heart is like an emotional anchor to keep the mind from wandering toward despair. Presently, one of my favorite songs to encourage myself is Kirk Franklin’s My Life Is in Your Hands.
I know that I can make it
I know that I can stand
No matter what may come my way
My life is in Your hands.
(4) Rendezvous with Nature
I have some stimulating conversation with my plants. Sometimes I get the impression that they say “back at you” when I tell them how proud I am to watch their response to my care.
This particular one in the picture gave me some encouraging vibes after I felled a tall papaya tree which grew near it. Novice that I am, I gave no consideration to where the tree might fall; I just kept chopping until it fell—right on top this plant and I began to grieve. However, when I cleared away the severed leaves, the root was still in tact.
The plant said to me, “See even when you don’t know what you’re doing, the Master Gardener decides the results."
Now I talk with them every day, expecting similar encouragement.
(5) Count Blessings
My favorite way to count my blessings is to journal a list. Not only does the list inspire present gratitude, it is there for future references to boost my track record of divine favor. Some of my present blessings include:
- the privilege to spend time with my mother;
- the ability to walk to the hill-ocean view that I cannot see from my house;
- my belonging to a family-type online community of writers who share encouragement;
- answered prayers and hope of more timely answers.
(6) Encourage Someone
There are a few people whom I call when l wish someone would call me. One of the persons on my list is a lady who has taken care of two disabled relatives for twenty years. Recently one passed, and she continues to care for the other with minimal outside help. She has had no vacation in years. Her strength encourages me as we share prayers and spiritual support.
One of the most discouraging feelings, in my opinion, is the feeling of uselessness. It boosts my sense of worth and provides self encouragement when I encourage someone else.
(7) Dust Off Old Trophies
Throughout the years, several gifts and objects have been given to me in appreciation of services or performances I have rendered. My intention is self encouragement, not boasting, when I dust off old plaques and awards and look at them. They tell me that other people see my value.
There is one particular photo album that I include in my “trophies.” I started it when an upset family member barked at me, “Don’t you see nobody likes you?”
My response to him was, “There are many more people in the world who like me than the few of you who don’t.”
To validate my claim, I started a photo album of people who express love and gratitude to me. I include pictures of young women who attend my seminars and pictures of bouquets I receive on my birthdays or other special days. Those pictures encourage me.
Song: Encourage Yourself
(8) Make Use of Good Media
On occasions, my search for self encouragement takes me to YouTube or Netflix, for something that I am sure will encourage me. The television is not right for this, because I do not want to take a chance watching something that may not turn out as I hope. So, my favorite views are:
- sermons from my favorite preachers;
- music from my favorite artists;
- movies with the theme of victory (mostly basketball games in which the underdog wins);
- comedy from artists who inspire laughter with wholesome themes.
Easy-to-read biographies and poetry also uplift my spirits; and so do the many videos of my grandson. I stay ready for self encouragement.
© 2014 Dora Isaac Weithers
More by this Author
There’s a clear relationship between play and how much joy and fulfillment people experience in their lives.”-Brené Brown, research professor. Read about the kinds of play that can improve well-being.
Those who deliberately lose social connectedness in an effort to avoid people-problems also lose connectedness with themselves and reality. Learn the benefits of connectedness and how to maintain it.
Before you become annoyed by the habit of humming in the elderly, find out why they hum and how it benefits them. Your tolerance level may increase and you may gain a new appreciation for humming.