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

Look ahead to the ocean; look back to the hills.  Photo by  J. Stephen Conn
Look ahead to the ocean; look back to the hills. Photo by J. Stephen Conn | Source

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.


(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.


MsDora's Photos
MsDora's Photos

(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.


Birthday bouquet from someone who likes me
Birthday bouquet from someone who likes me | Source

(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


91 comments

word55 profile image

word55 2 years ago from Chicago

Those were 8 great inspirational ideas MsDora, You should definitely compile a book of all you write. The world could use your wisdom. You have great music videos here as well. The flowers were so lovely. Your plant survived the crush on them. You're an inspiration to the community.This should be HUB OF THE DAY!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

This is inspiring and useful. I particularly enjoyed reading how you handled the situation when a relative expressed that no one supposedly liked you. Great way to handle that.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

What a wonderful hub here on encouragement and you certainly have the best methods to encourage oneself! I really love that passage from Jeremiah. Thank you for including it here. This is a great morning devotion for me this morning before I head off to work in the city.

What helps me to stay encouraged is for me to be mindful as to my thoughts. When I realize I am being a bit negative, I think of what my mind has been thinking on, and soon realize I need to refocus my thoughts to what He would have us to think on ... those things that are true, lovely, good, worthy of praise, excellent and so on.

Voted up ++++ tweeting, pinning and sharing

God bless you. Have a lovely day and thank you for the encouragement.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

actions of encouragement spoke louder than words.. and your actions can easily be seen here.. bless you MsDora...:)


sallybea profile image

sallybea 2 years ago from Norfolk

MsDora,

You nailed it with this one. Your writing always speaks to me, encourages me and it is my hope that this comment makes you feel both valued and encouraged. I always look forward to reading your Hubs, thank you.

Sally.


Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

Excellent advise Dora I made a note of all of them and will try to remember to do them more consistently. Thank you.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Words, it means a lot to me to receive a HOTD nomination from you. Thank you very much.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Flourish. I really had to encourage myself then, and I think it worked.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Faith, thank you for sharing. Your idea is a great one because the entire battle is for the mind. If we can keep the thoughts negative, we surely would be encouraged.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Frank, I always appreciate your blessings. Be blessed also and have a great day!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Dear Beautiful Sally, be encouraged, yourself. Your kind comments always encourage me and I appreciate you greatly.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Eric, thanks for your input, and all the best trying these ideas.


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 2 years ago from Dallas, Texas

You serve as a beacon of hope and optimism for others who need your light. I love the way you handle lifting yourself up when you need it. Taking care of a loved one is one of the most important and valuable tasks we handle, yet sometimes, it is tough.

I can truly appreciate what you said about the view, before and after. For many years I had an unobstructed view of the sunrise and sunset. In the past few years, buildings have obscured the beauty of those daily blessings. You're so right. It is important to change our positions when we can't see.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Peg, thanks for your affirmations. I appreciate your kind words.


DDE profile image

DDE 2 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

I encouraged myself during all times especially the worst of times and expressed that in my work. Helpful answers and I will definitely keep this in mind.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Devika, I read your article and read your ideas for encouragement. Thanks for commenting.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

I love these suggestions, Dora. I have found that when I get outside of my head, and concentrate on doing good for others, then I improve in the process. Funny how that works. :)


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Bill, thanks for your input. Perhaps helping others helps because it takes our focus away from our own pain.


DreamingBoomer profile image

DreamingBoomer 2 years ago from Jackson, MS

Lovely compilation, Dora! Thank you so much. You have definitely brightened up my day! (and I needed it this morning.... )


lambservant profile image

lambservant 2 years ago from Pacific Northwest

Great stuff here Dora, darling. We think alike. There is a well known pastor and evangelist here in the states who lost his 33 year old son six years ago. Three weeks after it happened he preached and evangelistic message in sports stadium. She shared his tragedy and grief, but also shared that that night, and during the three weeks since it happened, he preaches to himself as well as others. He stuck to what he knew - God'sword, the richest source of encouragement one can ever find.

I do all the things you mentioned. Great minds think alike, eh friend?


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Karen, welcome to my HubCircle. Glad that you were encouraged by the article. See you around!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Lori, dear sweet lady, we think alike because we go the same Source for ideas, encouragement and everything else. Thanks for sharing that pastor's story and for being such a good support.


elle64 profile image

elle64 2 years ago from Scandinavia

Thanks a lot ,you are such an inspiration to me.


suzettenaples profile image

suzettenaples 2 years ago from Taos, NM

This is an excellent article. Your suggestions are great ones. I have done many of your suggestions and they do help in motivating me. On thing a for sure no matter how many people are around us , we are basically alone and need to be able to motivate ourselves. I love the one where our relative says no one likes you. I can't believe how horribly rude and awful that person is and I lov your response. I always keep cards and momentos from his who like me and look at them from time to time. Very interesting and informative hub!


SusanDeppner profile image

SusanDeppner 2 years ago from Arkansas USA

Awesome list!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Elle, inspiration is one of the things we share here, and you're part of it. Thanks for your kind words.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Suzette happy to meet someone who do similar activities. We do well to encourage ourselves.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Susan, glad you think so. So kind of you to let me know.


grand old lady profile image

grand old lady 2 years ago from Philippines

We all have times when we feel down, but your tips are very helpful for self encouragement, especially when there is no one to talk to or vent to. Great article, ms. Dora.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Mona, we've all bee there. Glad these tips seem helpful. Be encouraged, today.


sheilamyers 2 years ago

Your hub about encouragement is very encouraging. There are many days all I hear are the negative things about my life and it's nice to know there are ways to get those encouraging words even if we have to read them in a book or hear them in an inspirational video.


Homeplace Series profile image

Homeplace Series 2 years ago from Hollister, MO

Thanks, so much, for these wonderful suggestions. I do remember most, but one or two I forget from time to time. It nice to be reminded. Thank you, again, for sharing! ;-)


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Yes, Sheila. Sometimes we have to search for encouragement, because it is our responsibility to encourage ourselves. Thank for input.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Dr. Bill, so glad you stopped by. Thanks for reading and commenting.


ologsinquito profile image

ologsinquito 2 years ago from USA

I think counting your blessings and being content with what you have is what it's all about, and you can be happy this way. Also, doing kind things for others can increase your own happiness.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

It is good to be reminded to seek encouragement because it is not just there waiting for us is it? You have some wonderful was to encourage yourself and I will remember those to seek some of my own when needed. Wonderful message as always. ^+


Venkatachari M profile image

Venkatachari M 2 years ago from Hyderabad, India

Very inspiring article. I like all these points. I follow some of them already and feel much satisfaction and encouragement. I shall adopt the other ones also to get more encouraged.

Voted up and thanks for sharing.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Ologsinquito, you're right on. Thanks for your input.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Jackie, it seems that self encouragement is an ongoing responsibility. Thanks for your kind input.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Venkatachari, happy for you that you find the article helpful. Thanks for reading and sharing.


ignugent17 profile image

ignugent17 2 years ago

Wonderful MsDora and it is really encouraging. We sometimes feel discourage in life and your hub is really like a fresh air that encourages that reader to do something.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. :-)


Michael-Milec profile image

Michael-Milec 2 years ago

Great idea " Self Encouragement " - encouraging myself when no one else is around, plus you are listing many helpful how it might be done. Like "Talk to Self " - isn't sign of insanity when I hear myself saying 'com-on Michael, you can do it better than that'- or even encouraging my body for living more fully for the rest of my earthly journey " we are not skipping daily exercise or avoid working in the garden , just because you do not feel like..."

Voted up and useful.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Ignugent, glad you found some encouragement in my article. Thanks for your comment.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Michael, you fully understand self encouragement. Go on encouraging yourself. Thanks for sharing.


denise.w.anderson profile image

denise.w.anderson 2 years ago from Bismarck, North Dakota

Your experience of felling the papaya tree and the plant speaking back to you spoke to my heart. There are many times in my life, when I have done things without thinking, and thankfully, the Lord protects me from the consequences of my own actions! You are a wonderful one to give encouragement to others, and it is very evident by your loyal following and ready comments that lift the spirits. I hope that I can be more like you!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Denise, you're very kind. You also share some empowering concepts, and I hope we both can be the best of who God made us to be. Thanks for your encouragement.


Hendrika profile image

Hendrika 2 years ago from Pretoria, South Africa

Thank you for this, we all need some encouragement from time to time. I often find it very hard to encourage myself and I really need to work on it.


tobusiness profile image

tobusiness 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

MsDora, this is exceptional work. I love your ideas for self encouragement. I'm pretty good at discouraging myself, so it's great to learn about self encouragement. I read you comment on DDE's page, it's lovely to see what you did with the inspiration.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Hendrika, thanks for stopping by. I hope that these ideas will help you create some that are practical and helpful for you.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Jo, if it were not for discouragement, there would be no need for encouragement. So we can learn from each other how to help ourselves. I appreciate your comment.


heidithorne profile image

heidithorne 2 years ago from Chicago Area

Totally agree! Sometimes those around you may be discouraging. Not going to change them. So you're only choice is to be self-encouraging. And if you work alone a lot of the time (like me and many other small business folks), you only have yourself. Thank you for the self-boosting message!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Heidi, thanks for reading and commenting. Hope you got some ideas for your own self encouragement; we all need it.


SatendraSaini profile image

SatendraSaini 2 years ago from India

very nice job thanks for sharing such a wonderful hub with us.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Satendra, glad you like the article. Thanks for reading and commenting.


Marie Flint profile image

Marie Flint 2 years ago from Jacksonville, FL

Beautiful message, Dora. Thank you for taking the time to really think about those things that uplift you.

My family is a bit like yours because appreciation is rarely expressed, and when I give it, I'm regarded as weird. That does't stop me, though.

Voted Useful, Awesome, and Beautiful. Sharing on Google+ and Face Book. ***


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Right on, Marie. Glad to know that you are the encourager in the family. In time, they will see the value of it, and will learn from you. Thank you for sharing.


manatita44 profile image

manatita44 2 years ago from london

Extremely useful tips: walking, poetry, u-tube. Nice quotes, and well-written Hub. Miss the simplicity of the Islands. Have a great Sunday, Dee.


Romeos Quill profile image

Romeos Quill 2 years ago from Lincolnshire, England

Another great Hub MsDora with an uplifting message.

When I hear about people praying for things which I'm already in receipt of, that is encouraging to appreciate those things that may be taken for granted and a reality check to pay more attention.

Clickety-click, Up, up and away!

R.Q.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Manatita, the islands are still very beautiful. Don't miss them, visit them. Thanks for your comment.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Romeos, I like your spirit of appreciation and gratitude. Thanks for your input.


Elsie Hagley profile image

Elsie Hagley 2 years ago from New Zealand

Beautiful article, all so very true and helpful. I count my blessings every morning that I wake, it's great to see a new day.

I'm blessed living in the country, animals keep my body alert, the birds singing in the tree fills my heart with love and contentment.

Life is good.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Elsie, what a great summary statement. "Life is good." Good words with which to encourage ourselves. Thanks for sharing.


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 2 years ago

I use many of your suggestions here to chase away the blues and to encourage myself. I sing around the house most often and it's amazing how it lifts your spirit. Thanks for sharing these wonderful ideas. God bless you.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Hi Teaches, thanks for your input. Keep singing!


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

More good advice and ideas - it seems that once again I'm not receiving notifications from my favorite writers, so I'm playing catch-up as I go back to see what I've missed. You've blessed me again!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Bill, thanks for taking the time to catch up. I've got some of that to do too. I appreciate your comment.


liamhubpages profile image

liamhubpages 23 months ago

Great hub and great ideas, thank you for that!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 23 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Liam. Glad you like my article.


ChitrangadaSharan profile image

ChitrangadaSharan 22 months ago from New Delhi, India

This is an excellent hub with some great tips and suggestions!

I agree with your views in this hub that self encouragement is the best encouragement. It is our own will power which can lead us or motivate us, to move ahead and be successful.

Thanks for sharing this engaging hub with great ideas! Voted up!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 22 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Chitrangada, thanks for your affirmation, and for underscoring the necessity of will power. I appreciate the vote also.


aesta1 profile image

aesta1 21 months ago from Ontario, Canada

Sing the clouds away. Love this. Will definitely do this.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 21 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Mary, "Sing the clouds away" is actually a line from a song and yes,, it works. Thanks for reading and commenting.


shanmarie profile image

shanmarie 19 months ago from Texas

I love this hub. It rings true on many levels, though it can be forgotten at times. Just the reminder is encouraging!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 19 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Shanmarie, we all get entangled in life and forget how to stay afloat. Thanks for affirming our need to remember.


jgshorebird profile image

jgshorebird 15 months ago from Earth

Dusting Off Old Trophies...I do that on occasion. Enjoyed this hub.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 15 months ago from The Caribbean Author

So happy that you liked it, Jgshorebird. Enjoy your trophies and the memories of the achievements that brought them to you.


swalia profile image

swalia 11 months ago

Lovely hub! My favorite way is to count my blessings. Writing in my gratitude journal daily makes me feel blessed for all that I have,


MsDora profile image

MsDora 11 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Good habit, Swalia, to count your blessings! It improves your overall health.


gerimcclym profile image

gerimcclym 11 months ago from Colorado

A very encouraging article on self encouragement. It is so important to take care of oneself, especially when one is caring for others. Caretaker burnout is real and unless the caretaker takes care of him or herself, he or she can't really take care of the other person properly. Thank you for these very practical habits and for Jer. 17:8. I also appreciated the humor in your account of talking to your plants and was glad to hear your plant's roots were intact when the papaya tree fell on it. It's as if God was encouraging you even through that experience.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 11 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Geri. Your mention of the plant made me smile. Yes, I think God talks encouragement through various scenarios in our day. Happy New Year to you!


Deborah Demander profile image

Deborah Demander 11 months ago from First Wyoming, then THE WORLD

Thanks for these tips. I often struggle with feelings of unworthiness and discouragement. I will definitely use your suggestions.

Namaste


MsDora profile image

MsDora 11 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Deborah, glad you find my tips useful. A Happy New Year to you!


aesta1 profile image

aesta1 11 months ago from Ontario, Canada

I can relate to your environment having grown up in wide gardens and beaches. We just bought lots of flowers to lift up the rental we have right now for the winter. Makes the place more like home. Thanks for all the tips.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 11 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Mary enjoy your winter flowers. Thank you for sharing and Happy New Year!


kiddiecreations profile image

kiddiecreations 11 months ago

I loved those points of encouragement. You've got some great ideas here! Counting your blessings and singing away the blues are a couple of my favorites that you highlighted. Thanks for the great inspiration!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 11 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Kiddiecreations, counting my blessings is my very favorite. Glad that you were inspired.


Paul Kuehn profile image

Paul Kuehn 11 months ago from Udorn City, Thailand

These are all great ideas for self-encouragement, &MsDora , which I enjoyed reading. If I started reading the Bible, I know I would receive a lot more encouragement. I am sharing this hub with HP followers.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 10 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Paul, it's not too late to add Bible Reading to your New Year's resolutions, if you think it will help. Thanks for your encouragement.


Rabadi profile image

Rabadi 10 months ago from New York

Counting your blessings to me is so important because we don't know what we have until we lose it. I enjoyed this read, great hub once again MsDora.

-Rabadi


MsDora profile image

MsDora 10 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Glad you enjoyed it, Rabadi. Thanks for your encouragement.


thelyricwriter profile image

thelyricwriter 10 months ago from West Virginia

Count your blessings! I couldn't agree more. Very helpful tips MsDora.

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