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Encouragement Ignites Desire - How do we Encourage Others

Updated on September 6, 2013
Stuart Miles @
Stuart Miles @

At the sherry fountain in my foyer I have already explained why I don’t see encouragement as merely an act of giving hope or support to someone, but as a powerful human force that ignites and feeds human desires.

Quoting one of my favourite motivators, Napoleon Hill: "Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything” and "when your desires are strong enough you will appear to possess superhuman powers to achieve."

How do we encourage others?


Encouraging others by example and ONLY by example, certainly deserves to be mentioned first. In our capacity as parents, relatives, teachers, colleagues, friends, neighbours we unintentionally encourage others to follow our example. We ignite desire in them and feed it by merely being ourselves. Because of this indisputable fact we have to be responsible –

In the shoes of the one who is setting the example -

“Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plant the seed of either success or failure in the mind of another.” Napoleon Hill

In the shoes of the observer -

“Look at people for an example, but then make sure to do things your way. Surround yourself with positive people.” Queen Latifah

“Surround yourself with people who are smarter than you.” Russell Simmons

“It's very important to surround yourself with people you can learn from.” Reba McEntire

Stuart Miles @
Stuart Miles @


In our capacity as parents, teachers, instructors, friends, colleagues we also teach in a direct manner by sharing our knowledge and experience with the expectation that it will ignite and feed the desire in others to accomplish their goals despite setbacks.

In the capacity of a mentor, coach, counsellors or friend our expectations may not be that high, yet we would lose the desire to encourage if we don’t see any positive results. Encouragement is like fire; no response is like a fire extinguisher.

And this brings us back to what I have categorized as a fact at the sherry fountain: Our instincts (hunger and thirst) are not sufficient to encourage us to accomplish significant goals; our survival and growth depend on the encouragement we receive from our fellow-man.

“There is one quality which one must possess to win, and that is definiteness of purpose, the knowledge of what one wants, and a burning desire to possess it.” - Napoleon Hill

Again! The word ‘desire’. By having a definite purpose and a burning desire to accomplish our goals we encourage everybody around us to follow suit.

Stuart Miles @
Stuart Miles @

Thank You!

Thank you Angelia Phillips aka femmeflashpoint, Maria Jordan aka marcoujor and Shauna Bowling aka bravewarrior for encouraging me to accomplish yet another goal on my path.

Let’s allow Napoleon Hill to encourage us all:

“Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire and begin at once, whether you ready or not, to put this plan into action.”

Spring in a semi-desert region (Namaqualand, South Africa)

© Martie Coetser - Just a picture, encouraging me in so many ways. Sent to me by my dear friend Lany Olivier.
© Martie Coetser - Just a picture, encouraging me in so many ways. Sent to me by my dear friend Lany Olivier.

© Martie Coetser


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    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Hi JPSO, thanks for reading and commenting. Encouraging others can so easily becomes a habit, and why not?

    • JPSO138 profile image


      6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines, International

      Well, the title itself tells what this hub is all about. It's very encouraging and I wish more people will be able to read this. Up for this one!

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      I agree, nighthag. Sadly, the power of negativity is so much stronger. While positivity is fire, negativity is water and sand. That is why I avoid negative people as far as possible.

    • nighthag profile image

      K.A.E Grove 

      6 years ago from Australia

      There is nothing like the force of positivity to lift you higher

      This is a great article that highlights the benefits to not only ourselves but also family , friends, and co workers

      Loved it

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Pamela, I love your new profile picture. So good to see you! You, too, is a great encourager and I am truly grateful to have you in my circle of friends :)

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      6 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Encouragement is an excellent topic and so important in our lives. You are certainly one of the people I know I could turn to for encourage or just good advice. This hub is awesome, as usual.

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      @ Vinaya - I enjoy your company in cyberspace. I honestly wish I had more time to participate in the groups and to read more hubs :) But as I've commented in one of the groups, we are all friends and we enjoy watching each other's doings.... like a school with many students. Solidarity is our slogan :)

      @ Sharkye - I like your words: "We have to build a waterproof shelter around our burning desires--to keep others from raining it out." And in the process we have to form an encouraging vacuum for those with the same desires.... :)

    • Sharkye11 profile image

      Jayme Kinsey 

      6 years ago from Oklahoma

      Beautiful hub! There is far too much competition and not enough encouragement in the world. Which is why to be able to influence others, we have to build a waterproof shelter around our burning desires--to keep others from raining it out. Sharing, voting!

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 

      6 years ago from Nepal


      Man/woman is a social animal. Social means he/she cannot exist alone.

      When were were beginners, there were many people who encouraged us, helped us plugged us; so when we have the privilege of experience, success, knowledge, it is our duty to help people.

      You have always been a great help. Thank you very much for being with me.

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Wonderful, shanmarie! I am on my way to read it :)

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon Henry 

      6 years ago from Texas

      Okay, Martie, as promised, I am giving you notification of the hub on love that you told me to do. Now, I look forward to yours. ;-)

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Nell, somewhere in the middle of the night, no it was around 5:00am, I saw this one pimped by you in FB. Thanks a lot for the nice surprise. You know our writings are like bread crumbs on water. We never know who will be 'fed' and when. Thanks for leaving such an inspiring comment :)

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      My dearest fpher, I believe you are still enjoying you holiday, so I feel very much encouraged by your visit and comment. Take care, my sweet friend :)

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      6 years ago from England

      How did I miss this? Your words always encourage me Martie, this is so great and a wonderful hub to finish on for the night, brilliant! voted up and shared, nell

    • fpherj48 profile image


      6 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York encourage me by your fabulous talent to INSPIRE. I am always moved by your words, that clearly come from your heart of hearts......This is a wonderful hub, Martie, as all of your work has been. Your friendship is a blessing....Up +++tweeted & pinned

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      @ DDE - Always nice to see you. We learn a lot from each other here in HubPages :)

      @ ChristyWrites – I love quotes. Whatever I want to say somebody had already said, and totally perfect.

      @ tillsontitan – what a lovely, heart-warming and encouraging comment! I say exactly the same to you :)

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 

      6 years ago from New York

      You are the epitome of encouragement! Your words, your expressed thoughts and the wonderful examples you give. I am so grateful to HP for introducing me to you and allowing me to have a friendship with a very encouraging and loving lady!

      Voted all but funny, pinned and shared.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      So true that we are less likely to continue to try for our goals if we don't see positive results ... The problem is that the results may take longer to achieve than we realize. I really enjoyed the quotes you include in the hub - sharing!

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      6 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      A wonderful thought and write up on Encouragement Ignites Desire - How do we Encourage Others, so true about these quotes. Be with people one can learn from an excellent one.

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      @ epbooks – I like your sentence ‘eventually they may return that favor for someone else’, because we so often don’t receive the same encouragement (or anything else) from a person we have encouraged or helped in any way. When we are in need of anything we often receive it from strangers or from people we have not expected anything. It is a matter of ‘reaping what one sows.’

      @ MsDora – Thank you for visiting and commenting. Much appreciated :)

      @ drbj – You have the most amazing and admirable way of encouraging others – with your unique sense of humor. You are a super role model. Of course, I/nobody will ever be just like you; we can but only strive to be in your league :)

      @ Eiddwen – that word ‘hectic’ - also the best description of my life. Days just don’t have enough hours, or my energy just don’t last long enough to finish all set tasks. But wonderful to see you from time to time. I love everything you do and share with me, and in particularly on FB.

    • Eiddwen profile image


      6 years ago from Wales

      What a great hub Martie ;things have been hectic these past week or so but so glad I have a little time to catch up with you today.

      Enjoy your day.


    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      6 years ago from south Florida

      Encouragement of others, Martie, has always been one of my best and most useful traits. Of course I don't label this talent as encouragement. Oh, no! I call it positive reinforcement and charge more! :)

      Beautiful article, m'luv, and your final photo is inspiring. Like you!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      6 years ago from The Caribbean

      Great encouragement! Thank you for all those fine quotes.

    • epbooks profile image

      Elizabeth Parker 

      6 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      I love when I am given the opportunity to encourage someone that I truly believe in. It's almost a way to pay it forward as people learn from example. So, by encouraging someone , eventually they may return that favor for someone else. Great hub!

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Thanks again to all of you for leaving such supportive comments on my hub.

      @ Lastheart – Changes are also excellent encouragers; they ignite in us the desire to expand our horizons. While expanding our horizons we discover more pleasant and comfortable hangouts. Go for it!

      @ marcoujor - If it was not for your encouragement I would have closed my shop in HP about 2 years ago. Love you lots and lots :)

      @ billybuc – In today’s world we even need encouragement to love, because too often we cast our love like pearls before swine. You are a great encourager :)

      @ always exploring – That me-me-me venting is so part of a writer’s development. Me-I-Myself is like a cork, blocking our writer’s soul. We have to get rid of it in order to free our writer’s soul. I am especially grateful for the encouragement I got from you while I was getting rid of my corks :)

      @ Mhatter99 – The positive results of encouraging others is a great encourager itself. Like the truth in ‘we learn more when we teach.”

      @ hawaiianodysseus – What a thought-provoking statement: “Encouragement never bit the hand that fed it.” I had a terrific weekend – visited a friend I last saw in 1986 :)

      @ W1totalk – We can but only look at a person who never does anything constructive, and not to talk about those who are always negative and judgmental. They never encourage others, unless we can thank them for encouraging us to live without them.

      @ shanmarie – Indeed, empathy, compassion, concern, love in general are surely the foundation of encouragement - the drive/force that makes us encourage others. Thanks for emphasizing this aspect of encouragement.

      @ bravewarrior – You are also a keeper in my life. Thanks again, Shauna, for being you. Encouraging others is surely one of your involuntary reactions.

      @ Faith Reaper – You, too, are a precious encourager. Having you as a friend keeps me strong and willing to share my thoughts :)

      @ Minnetonka Twin – So good to see you in my corner. I must admit that my efforts to uplift people are not always successful, and surely not because of anything I do or neglect to do, but only because they don’t want to be uplifted by me. Some people do reject encouragement because of personal issues. When they reject mine I feel terribly sad and powerless. Fact is, one can take a horse to the water but you can’t make him drink it.

      @ Genna East – “Yes, I can.” Some people are born with this positive mental attitude, while others, sadly, just never reach the stage of realizing it. I think I have already said something in this line, but worthy to repeat: “So often encouragement, like love, is pearls casted before swine.

      @ AliciaC – As an encourager you are indeed a role model. The patch of ‘orange’ in the picture is but only a patch. There are also white, red, pink, yellow, purple, etc. – absolutely awesome this time of the year. Have a look -

      @ mckbirdbks – I am indeed a natural encourager/matriarch/leader. However, I have learned (the hard way) to be not a dictator, but to allow others to follow their own hearts. Please check my reply on Minnetonka Twin’s comment. At this very moment I am terribly downhearted just because of this very fact. When one of your own children reject encouragement, what do you do?

      @ Suzie HQ – That ‘thinking before speaking’ – We can but only try our very best to always say the right thing at the right time. Sadly, there are people who interpret even the positive negatively.

    • Suzie HQ profile image

      Suzanne Ridgeway 

      6 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Hi Martie,

      Encouragement is so important and something I have always given to other's be they family, work colleagues, friends or fellow writer's, we all need it at times when we doubt ourselves. Great advice too on thinking before speaking as what you say can have an impact on other's as we are all sponges soaking up all around us.

      Cheers for another thought provoking article with great quotes and love your closing photo!

      Up,useful, interesting, shared!

    • mckbirdbks profile image


      6 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      Hello Martie, this is certainly thought provoking. I can see in every paragraph that you are a natural encourager to those around you. You are likely the Matriarch of your family and leader in any surroundings you find yourself in.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for discussing an important topic, Martie. I am very conscious of the role of encouragement as I teach. It's a vital part of my job.

      I love the colors in the last photo in this hub!

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      6 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      “Look at people for an example, but then make sure to do things your way. Surround yourself with positive people.” Queen Latifah

      Encouragement is positive by its very nature. It persuades us to dare to think, “Yes, I can.” I liked this inspiring hub, Martie. Very much. Thank you! Up and sharing. :-)

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 

      6 years ago from Minnesota

      Very inspirational and informative hub. You really know how to uplift a person. Hit many buttons and voted up :-) Hope your having a great weekend.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      6 years ago from southern USA

      Dearest Martie,

      Yes, all of us need to be encouraged to nourish our souls. I am a firm believer in speaking forth encouraging words to build up and not tear down anyone.

      Thank you for this insightful write here, which speaks volumes of truth.

      Up and more and sharing

      Hugs and love to you from southern USA,

      Faith Reaper

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      Martie, without encouragement it would be too easy to give up on our dreams. When you truly care about people and recognize their goals and even their insecurity in achieving those goals, encouragement comes forth as an involuntary reaction. People in our lives who offer encouragement without batting an eyelash are real 'keepers'. I think we all have found true friendship as the result. You, my friend, are a 'keeper'!

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon Henry 

      6 years ago from Texas

      This is a very thought provoking piece. I think that encouragement is sometimes like so many other forms of support offered by others either directly or indirectly, i.e empathy, compassion, concern, love in general. These things are not always recognized as a personal need and may in fact may not be personally needed in orxer to thrive, but when present, have a value that enriches a person's being and life.

    • W1totalk profile image


      6 years ago

      This helps to boost people, sometimes whether they know or they don't, it promotes their work skill and hard work. Thank you for this hub.

    • MartieCoetser profile imageAUTHOR

      Martie Coetser 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      To All

      Thank you so much for your most encouraging comments. I'll be back tomorrow to reply in a more personal manner. This is going to be a hectic weekend boots and all in the real world...... as if Hubland is not a real world for me. In the meantime, enjoy your weekend :)

    • hawaiianodysseus profile image

      Hawaiian Odysseus 

      6 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      Encouragement never bit the hand that fed it. I am challenged to share that insight--directly or indirectly--with HubPages. : )

      Thanks for a thought-provoking piece, Martie, and the complementary gems from Napoleon Hill. Aloha, and have a terrific weekend!


    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you for this. During my time, I was a master at encouraging people.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      6 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I can't imagine a day that i haven't needed encouragement, starting as a young child. When we take the time to encourage another, not only are they inspired, their spirit is lifted and their self esteem begins to build, believing they can accomplish whetever they set out to do. I find that eliminating negativism is the first and most important factor in reaching our upmost desires. I remember when i first started writing on HP, people encouraged me to write and when my me-me-me venting ended, i was able to enjoy writing. You and Micky Dee were two of the people who encouraged me daily, for that, i am grateful. Thank you Martie. This is a beautiful hub...

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      6 years ago from Olympia, WA

      What the world, needs love, sweet love....and a little encouragement for dessert. :)

      Love the message my friend.


    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 

      6 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Dear Martie,

      I am so proud of your ability to juggle a beautiful personal life, your professional work, the writing you do for HP, as well as other avenues...You have many talents and are most encouraging yourself, with your colleagues and friends.

      Now The Sherry Fountain is the creme de la creme...and I plan to be a frequent just warning ya...!!

      Love you and thank you, mar

    • Lastheart profile image

      Maria Magdalena Ruiz O'Farrill 

      6 years ago from Borikén the great land of the valiant and noble Lord

      Very nice. I have been kind of frustrated with HP, but the people are who makes the difference, this was really encouraging! Thanks, I know that who reads this will understand that on the back of a computer a person filled of emotions is there.


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