- Books, Literature, and Writing»
- Commercial & Creative Writing
Inspirational and Insightful Quotations #72 --- Encouragement
Quotations on Encouragement
Nothing costs less than encouragement, and few things are worth more.
---Henry F. Cope, Monroe City Democrat, Monroe City, Mo., May 27, 1909.
A man who is not susceptible to encouragement will never succeed.
---Charles M. Schwab, The Citizen, Berea, Ky., Aug. 24, 1916.
The greatest gift anyone has to offer another is that personal strength which is called moral support. Its value increases in proportion to its availability in time of need. It is the essence of true friendship. There is no finer element of personality than that reserve of strength which imparts courage and cheer to others to cope with life’s pressing demands. Everyone well might pray for it, to be able to serve those dependent on him to sustain them through trial. It is a divine gift and a high responsibility.
---Edmund J. Kiefer, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., March 24, 1957.
All who live on the plain fare of industriousness are entitled to an occasional feast of encouragement.
---Edmund J. Kiefer, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Feb. 8, 1959.
One is himself praiseworthy who praises others for their encouragement.
---Edmund J. Kiefer, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Nov. 10, 1961.
To encourage merit in others is to contribute to it.
---Edmund J. Kiefer, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Nov. 2, 1962.
There is more help in an ounce of encouragement than there is in a ton of advice.
---Elijah Powell Brown, El Paso Times, El Paso, Texas, Jan. 9, 1894.
No one was ever hurt by getting the encouragement he deserved.
---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., May 19, 1934.
No man is a failure who has started some other man striving again.
---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., May 12, 1937.
The word encourage has at its center the Latin word cor which means heart. When a person encourages others, he “puts heart into them.” He helps them “to stand on their own feet.” The best people are always doing this for others. Many of our fellow citizens have been wounded in the race of life. Some have lost their faith and their way. Some have fallen by the wayside. They will remain there unless we encourage them—put heart into them—help them get on their feet again and move forward. Encourage others to keep going forward. Kind words help some, and kind acts help even more. Sometimes our friends do not appreciate our efforts to offer encouragement, but these are in the minority. Most of us want and need encouragement. When we encourage others, we reap rich dividends for ourselves.
---Chelsea H. “C.H.” Kelley, Williamson Daily News, Williamson, W. Va., April 14, 1952.
The French word of “heart” is “cour” and it’s at the heart of the word “encourage.” When you encourage someone, you give them heart.
The dictionary says to encourage is to abet, to inspirit, to embolden, to countenance, to inspire with courage.
Just a smile or a nod can encourage. Obviously you make a friend when you offer a little encouragement, when you give heart. Just as obviously, you lose a friend by withholding encouragement.
The way the human being is constituted, it’s the person who expects the most, who demands the most, who fails to encourage. This further enrages the self-centered dingbat to the point where animosity is all but palpable. Encapsulation is self-defeating. The more you withhold, the more you are held apart.
Encourage. Give heart.
---Bill Copeland, Sarasota Journal, Sarasota, Fla., Jan. 10, 1974.
Encouragement is the spark that speeds the wheels of progress and provides an urge to excel. It makes good workers better and it lifts toil from drudgery to creative endeavor.
A word of encouragement can put the wings of happiness on an entire day and its memories will carry into many tomorrows as well. A pat here or a word there is all it takes to replace indifference with animation.
The results can be surprising and while they may seem like only little things they will work wonders equally on the giver and the recipient. ...
For something that costs nothing, encouragement is a rare commodity.
---Paul E. Gustafson, Milwaukee Sentinel, Milwaukee, Wis., Jan. 29, 1955.
Encouragement is needed at all times. It is the torch which lights many a difficult path.
---R. Lorne McTavish, Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, May 20, 1929.
Encouragement costs little but it pays big dividends.
---Roy L. Smith, Tampa Morning Tribune, Tampa, Fla., March 12, 1941.
Encouragement is the fragrance of a kindly heart.
---Roy L. Smith, Tampa Morning Tribune, Tampa, Fla., March 12, 1941.
Those who give encouragement give themselves courage.
---Roy L. Smith, Tampa Morning Tribune, Tampa, Fla., May 27, 1941.
The fact remains that without encouragement and without faith, the stoutest heart will in time grow faint and doubt itself.
---Elbert Hubbard, quoted in Deseret Evening News, Salt Lake City, Utah, Sept. 16, 1905.
Two business men were saying that a time came in each of their lives when they would have discontinued their businesses had it not been for outside encouragement.
At such a time each man said that he was so much immersed in wondering and worrying and figuring about how the business was going and why it was not going better that he had lost the ability to think clearly and worse of all, he had lost the ability to encourage himself.
That we imagine is an experience that has come to every man who has reached middle age.
At one time of maybe at times in his life he reached the point where no longer he could encourage himself.
At that time the only reason he kept going as he planned to go, was the impetus, the inspiration, the pickup, the steadying influence that came from another.
Throughout all the ages, thinkers have been unanimous in saying there is no such thing as a self-made man, a man who unaided and all by himself attained success.
What is known as the self-made man is the man who refuses to acknowledge that he ever receive any outside assistance. He gets the idea that to acknowledge outside assistance is to admit that he is a little man.
What is known as the self-made man is the man who is immune to the least gratitude. While what he has accomplished is absolute proof that he received outside aid, he feels grateful to no person who ever assisted him and excuses himself for his ingratitude by claiming that he never did receive any outside aid.
That is why people instinctively back off from the man who boasts that he is self-made. There is no predicting of what a man who is guilty of ingratitude will do.
The lesson in this fact, which never yet has had an exception, is that the young man reaching twenty-one years of age and beginning his life career should get it well fixed in his mind and in his heart that if he expects to make a success by his own efforts he is certain to make a failure.
Some parents, some teachers, some preachers, some older men have refused to tell a young man that feeling that to do so might destroy the initiative and the confidence and the industry and the will-to-succeed of the young man.
Yet if a young man possess initiative and self-confidence and industry and strong will power and other fine qualities of character, the best thing you can do for that young man is to tell him that he must make friends, he must win for himself people who will be willing to assist him.
No finer thing could be instilled in a young man’s heart than that success is a cooperative result. He must be assisted if he is to make a success and in turn and in gratitude he ought to assist others so that they can make successes. … Except for human assistance, no human being could ever attain success.
It would be well for the young man to comprehend that.
These two business men were acknowledging that outside aid that enabled them to go on to success when they would have come to a halt. …
Most men owe their success in large part to their mothers.
Most men owe much of their success to their wives.
All men owe something of their success to their friends.
Let’s impress upon every young man that if he goes through life unaided he is doomed to be a failure.
---Jack Williams, Sr., Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Sept. 10, 1942.
We all need encouragement more than we need criticism, no matter how sound the latter. Encouragement is the fuel that lights up the soul. It makes a man do the best that he can, and it makes him want to do the next job better.
---George Matthew Adams, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Oct. 4, 1937.
Every community has its knockers. They are not difficult to find. Stand around and start talk and one is almost sure to hear someone begin to knock someone. But the lifters—what rare people!
And what I mean by a lifter is that one who hunts around for someone to encourage, to boost, and help lift to a higher place in the community and in the estimate of himself.
A friend—a great newspaper publisher, by the way—once told me that there were only two types of people in town—the lifters and the leaners. But this talk is about the lifter as contrasted with that one who delights in discouraging a man by trying to pull him down.
Nearly every successful man and woman can point to someone who gave them early boosts—when they sorely needed them. A pat on the back, a you-can-do-it word has lifted the spirit of many a human being and started him anew to a higher plane of living.
Encouragement is perhaps the greatest factor in anyone’s success and happiness. It’s food, not only to the mind but to the spirit—that spirit which, at times, gets so very hungry for encouragement.
I read books that lift me. I talk with people who leave me on high ground and make me want to tackle the job that people say can’t be done—and do it!
We all need mental and spiritual prods at times. We all need a lift every day of our lives. By being a lifter, we also are lifted! Never discourage anyone who thinks that he is right. If he is wrong, he will find it out in time.
Nothing warms the human heart like lifting the hope, or ambition, or courage of someone else. Just try it!
---George Matthew Adams, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Nov. 9, 1937.
Encouragement still stands as the finest force in the development of success and happiness. You cannot hope to make much of a success of your business unless you continually encourage those who help you toward success and happiness.
There are high spots in all of our lives. Most of them have come about through the encouragement of someone else. …
Our best work is always done after someone has encouraged us. I don’t care how great, famous, or successful a man or woman may be, each hungers for continual encouragement. Note how improved an actor’s work is after his first applause. How much we owe to those who have taught us in years gone by.
Even a dumb animal puts forth his greatest strength as you encourage him in gentle, kindly words. Good work can never be expected from a worker whom you do not encourage.
Encouragement is oxygen to the soul! No one ever climbed spiritual heights without it. No one ever lived without it.
Note how good you feel after you have encouraged someone else. No other argument is necessary to suggest that you never miss the opportunity to encourage so that you in turn may receive encouragement.
---George Matthew Adams, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Jan. 2, 1941
The one thing that causes any individual, excepting none, to do his utmost is encouragement.
We are aware that some, particularly some employers, have the idea that always being dissatisfied with the work of an individual causes that individual to strive to do better work. We have yet to see that happen in the case of any individual, and we have talked to individual after individual about that very point.
Some employers as a matter of strategy adopt the policy of never saying they are satisfied with work even though they are satisfied. They withhold any and all praise. They never voice any commendation. They think this obtains the most work for the wages or salary paid. We have yet to see that strategy work with any individual.
The same truth holds elsewhere. Some people in charge of carrying a moment through to success will plan deliberately the failure of steps toward that success, believing in all sincerity that the failure of one step will spur the workers to harder efforts. Often in a campaign for memberships you find those in charge holding back memberships hoping thereby to make those at work, work harder.
Sometimes in an association or organization those in charge of the movement to secure unanimous cooperation seek to engineer a failure on the theory that the impact of the news of the failure will make the members bestir themselves to prevent a recurrent failure.
It simply is a theory that never has worked with a single individual since the world was created.
If you discourage a man, the only result is to make him more discouraged.
If you withhold praise the only result is to build up resentment in the heart of the man from whom praise was withheld, because any man, no matter who he is, has sense enough to know when he does good work and when he does faithful work and when he does loyal work. No man lacks that knowledge.
Even the people who withhold praise and encouragement, go forward to success only because of the encouragement of someone, maybe of several. They are not spurred forward by being cussed out; they are not inspired by praise for their efforts having been withheld. They move forward because every time they move forward there is someone who says, “That is fine. You did a good job. That shows and proves what you have in you.”
So evident is it that cussing one out, withholding praise, and refusing commendation never works that the wisdom of all the ages tells you “Nothing succeeds like success” and “Syrup catches more flies than vinegar.”
However, you do not need these proverbs or similar distillations of wisdom. All you need is your own experience. You are not an exceptional individual. You have the same emotions and the same emotional reactions as other individuals. You have the same spurs and inspirations as other individuals. If you will go back over the pathway to your own successes you will find that pathway paved with encouragement. It may have been your Mother; it may have been your Father; it may have been your Wife; it may have been your children; it may have been a Friend; it may have been your Minister; it may have been your employer; but you moved toward success solely because every step you took towards success brought you praise and commendation and encouragement from someone. It was then and not before you took the second step toward success and towards finer work.
Start any job to the accompaniment of discouragement; tackle any task to the tune of being cussed out; begin any undertaking under the prod of necessity and you will find that while you may turn out determined work it will never be your finest and your most efficient work.
If you aspire to be a leader; if you want the pleasure of being able to pay yourself on the back for having been a successful leader, the first thing to learn is that no individual ever does his best work except under the inspiration of encouragement. Until you learn that you will be a leader without followers; a criticizer who builds resentments. Resentful of your own failure will increase your criticisms and build greater resentments. You will never be a leader.
---Henry Arnold “H.A.” Stallings, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Dec. 7, 1940.
This would be a vastly more efficient world if people realized the importance of encouragement. No person is going to make a success of anything without encouragement. No person is going to make a success of anything without encouragement. The task may be a specific one or a general one; it may be one particular item in a program or it may be a life or a career, but the one certainty is that success will never come without encouragement.
It is some easier to understand that lack of encouragement is a guarantee of failure than it is to realize that the receiving of encouragement is a necessary step towards success.
There is much of truth in necessity being the mother of invention—when your back is against a brick wall the only way to move is forward but necessary and brick walls denying further retreat cannot make success.
It cannot be said that the receiving of encouragement will bring success but it can be said that all persons, without exception who lack encouragement, will fail to make a success.
That is an easy proposition to prove because the proof lies in the personal experience of any person who has made a success of anything. If you or I or any person will examine how any success you have attained has been made and the reason therefor, we will find invariably one of the reasons has been encouragement.
People can manifest an amazing amount of determination but no person has the ability to keep on striving in the face of no encouragement whatsoever. To do that requires more determination than any human being has ever yet manifested.
Maybe the best way to realize the importance of encouragement is to go back to its derivation and original meaning. It means “to put heart into.” That literally is the miracle you accomplish when you encourage another—you give another new heart to go on with what he is seeking to accomplish.
Have you ever sought to go ahead with a task when, despite everything, it seemed your heart was not in it? Do you remember how you tried to force yourself to keep on striving? If at such a time someone came along and convinced you of how important the task was, convinced you that the way you were trying to accomplish the task was the correct way, that what you had already done amounted to something, a veritable miracle did take place within you. You began to work with a heart, but it was a heart that another placed within you.
That is why it is a serious thing to withhold the encouragement you feel is deserved. Time and time again you have noted in the life and work of a friend, of an associate, of an acquaintance a performance or an effort that you felt sure merited encouragement only never to give that encouragement. Yet the encouragement you failed to give may have meant for the other person the difference between success and failure. Truly it is a great responsibility one assumes when he decides to refuse to give the encouragement he knows is deserved.
I think if we but knew how many ways there are of giving encouragement we would never refuse to give encouragement. I think we have withheld encouragement because we thought mistakenly that words were the only means of giving encouragement and because we felt hesitant with words. Actually you have many, many ways of giving encouragement and the more willing you are to give encouragement the more ways you will find of giving it.
Yet how many times you have failed to give the encouragement you felt had been earned by another in whom you thought you were sincerely interested?
Think how wonderful it would be for you if thorough encouragement you had the high honor of performing a miracle and of placing new heart in one in whom you profess genuine interest.
I could recommend to you no more thought-provoking study than a study of “To give encouragement is to place new heart in another.” If each day you live you would give a little study to that great truth you would be a finer person and you would have the joy of having put in the greater successes of many persons in whom you are genuinely interested. In the fullest, richest sense, “To give encouragement is to place new heart in another.”
---Henry Arnold “H.A.” Stallings, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Sept. 30, 1938.
Recently a fine, appreciated fellow, when in an intimate mood, said: “I guess I am a pretty forlorn sort of a fellow. You have got to have somebody cheering for you. You know how it is. You sort of have to have somebody cheering for you.”
That put us to wondering what is it that cheers a person.
What is it that conveys to a person this cheer that “you sort of have to have”?
Here is what we think it is.
It is an unshakable confidence in you by somebody you like.
It is the kind of confidence that simply cannot be shaken. Even though you make mistakes; even though you pull bones; even though you fail for a while to be going forward; even though there appears to be nothing taking place that is favorable for you, nevertheless this person you like keeps on having confidence that you are going to make the grade in a big way.
Somehow we feel that is the most cheerful thing that can happen to a person. Somehow we feel that if this kind of cheer enters into one’s life every day, he is more likely to make a big success than he would be under any other condition.
It is, we think, a little stronger than that. If a person receives that sort of cheer every day it will be more difficult for him not to make a success than it will for him to make a success.
This fellow was correct, then. Cheering is something “you sort of have to have.” It is perilous to let yourself get where the day is without that sort of cheer.
That put us to thinking about confidence. What is confidence?
The meaning of “confidence” begins way back yonder with “to trust in.” An early use is by Young who says: “Judge before friendships, then confide till death.”
But the meaning we like is “certitude”—a certainty that never lapses into uncertainty. It is a faith in another person that is certain at all times, no matter what happens, no matter what the person does, no matter how the person regards that confidence.
Whence comes such confidence?
It comes from having managed somehow or another to gain a glimpse and knowledge of the real, inner self of a person, and of having through that glimpse and knowledge come to know that it is a self not to be denied, a self more than worthy of full success.
Knowing this inner self, thereafter, no temporary manifestations that do not ring true with this inner self, no incongruous happenings that for a while are not recognized by this inner self to be incongruous, can shake that certitude. Your needle of expectation points always due north to the fullness of development for this inner self. You cannot shake a certitude based on knowledge like that.
If there is ever a time when you feel humbly grateful it is when you have had an opportunity to know the real, inner self of a person and have found out that this real, inner self is genuinely fine. In response your gratefulness becomes genuine humility.
I am agreeing with this fellow I quoted at the beginning. “Cheering” is something you sort of have to have. It makes a day fuller for you. It makes you more efficient that day. It creates out of a day something that carries you nearer to full development and adequate expression.
If I had this “cheering” in my life, I would be loath to let it pass out of my life. Sometimes we have done that solely because we did not know “cheering” to be “cheering” until it was a thing of the past.
And, lastly, I got to thinking that in this confidence that cannot be shaken and in this certitude of faith that cannot be rendered uncertain, there is no ulterior motive. The one who has such a confidence in you entertains no thought of personal gain of any kind, material or spiritual. It is real confidence, certain, unshakable. It is a great thing to have that present in any day you live. How great it would be if it could be kept in all your days.
---Henry Arnold “H.A.” Stallings, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Oct. 18, 1939.
“As the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.”
This that stays in the life of one even as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land is an unchanging warmth of personal affection.
If there be one in your life who bestows upon you a warmth of affection that is unchanging and unalterable for you there is always, however weary the land may be, the restful shadow of a great rock.
When you are discouraged, when you are tired by the exertion of a great effort, when you are in the midst of a struggle that means much to you not yet knowing the outcome of the struggle, when you are shaken by disappointment, when you are torn by doubts, when you are trembling with anticipation, when you are nervous knowing what is ahead and must be done—in times like these you can be for a while with this person who bestows upon you a warmth of affection and under the expansive glow of that warmth you can feel rested, you can gain comfort, you can relax, you can stay for a needed while the constrictive pull of tension and you can emerge from this warmth better equipped for that which is ahead.
These times come to all—the times when you need to rest awhile in the shadow of a great rock. The unconsumed fires of ambition, the glowing embers of unquenchable desires, the carefully guarded inner hopes that leap high in glittering blaze from time to time, the heat of a fierce determination may burn within you and within their burnings may be the fusing that will mean success, but the times will come when it is necessary that you turn from the heat of these inner burnings to relax within the warmth of an unchanging affection bestowed by another.
There is a wealth of inspiration in knowing that this warmth of affection is unchanging and unalterable. It is of inestimable meaning to be certain that whenever the need arises and how often the need arises you can go to this person and obtain the comfort and the relaxation of expansion under an uninterrupted warmth. Truly that comes to be as significant in your life as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.
And by and by remembrance of what you have sat within this warmth and have rested from tension and effort and misunderstanding and tugs and strifes builds within you the hope that evermore this warmth of affection will be in your life, that whenever the land grows weary you can turn aside for a moment and rest within this shadow of a great rock.
You are one of the fortunate of this earth if it has been your privilege to be in the life of another as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. If so, there will be moments when warmth will fuse with warmth and out of the super-warmth will come super-comfort, super-relaxation, super-relief, super-inspiration, values that can come only from spiritual sharings.
Some there may be who fancy their lands will never be weary, and lulled by this fancy they place on their lands no great rocks that cast comforting shadows. They exercise no care to bring within their lives warmth of affection. They permit warmth of affection to pass out of their lives. For the days come when disappointments know no ease, when regrets know no comfort, when discouragement knows no inspiration, when tension knows no relaxation. These are the days when the bitterly grey hue of a sunless sky continues until night comes without the sun having arisen. These are days when monotony throbs its undertone as insistently as the alarum drums beating their message to tired hunters that the lost child has not yet been found, that the search must continue.
Perhaps poignancy sounds its deepest note within the human heart that knows it turned a cold indifference to warmth of affection by changing the awareness that what might have been was thrust aside and thrust aside wandered elsewhere.
It takes centuries to form a great rock that can cast a shadow in a weary land. It takes appreciation, use and mutuality to keep within your life such a rock formed by moments and minutes, months and year of having entertained an affection for you.
It may be that when your land grows weary there will be no rock thereon within whose shadow you may relax and obtain comfort, may lose tension and gain inspiration. By then it will be too late to begin studying how rocks are formed. Yet ceaseless as is the march of the centuries ever so ceaselessly rocks are being formed.
---Henry Arnold “H.A.” Stallings, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Nov. 13, 1939.
A distinguished writer comments: “Conversation is the warp and woof of human relationship.”
It has always been a claim of the poets that two people can become close enough to each other and can reach such a degree of mutual understanding that it becomes possible for each to interpret the silence of the other.
That is pure poetic fantasy. Actually it is rare, indeed, that one person understands the silence of another person, no matter how close the two may be; no matter how greatly the two love each other; no matter how long the two have been associated closely. In reality it is next to impossible to understand the silence of a person. You may read into that silence more than the other person places in it. You may misconstrue the silence as purposed when it is merely habitual. You may think the silence is a deliberate refusal to talk when it is not that at all. You may think the silence is made up of indifference when back of it is quite a bit of interest.
How many times have you had your silence interpreted exactly? How many times while you are silent has someone else been able to tell you what you are thinking? How many times have you been silent and another was able to know why you were silent?
If you depend on silence as a means of communication you run a risk of being misunderstood and you run the risk of all the little handicaps that result from misunderstandings.
If you want to be understood by another person, particularly, if you wish to be certain you are understood by another person, you had better resort to words.
Talking silences are evanescent figments of fantasy.
I have come to the conclusion that it is infinitely better for all people that it is an impossibility for any human being to interpret the silence of another human being.
That is because there is no substitute for a word spoken at the right time in the right place to the right person. If we were able to get the idea that we could substitute a silence for a word it would result in a host of people never having the right word said to them at the right time and in the right place.
That would be a tragedy, indeed. Think of yourself as being in a situation where you need above all else the right word only in that situation to be faced with silence.
There come times when every person needs comfort, needs encouragement, needs sympathy, needs help, needs companionship, needs affection. None of these things can be extended by silence.
If all the world remained silent the lonely person would be unbearably lonely; the depressed person would be unbearably depressed; the discouraged person would be unbearably discouraged; the sad person would be unbearably sad.
If all the world remained silent, no human being could make the grade.
To go forward in the midst of the silence of all the world is an impossibility for any human being.
That is why there is no substitute for the right word spoken to the right person at the right time in the right place.
It is the knowledge that no human being, no matter if he be the finest human being ever created, can go forward in the midst of the silence of all the world.
That is why the person who is able to say the right word to the right person at the right time in the right place is supremely gifted. He has the gift of preventing the operation of the principle that no human being can move forward in the midst of the silence of all the world. Sometimes I am inclined to think that is the highest power a human being can achieve—the power to make it possible for another human being to move forward. To possess a power like that is to possess a power that is inestimable. To be able to estimate a power like that you must be able to look into the future and to know how far the person will go for whom you have made it possible to go forward.
If there is anything for which we should hold appreciative affection it is for a word.
---Henry Arnold “H.A.” Stallings, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., Dec. 18, 1940.
The strangest paradox of all is that the man who was enabled to reach success because of encouragement others gave him in return absolutely refuses ever to encourage anyone.
The usual reason assigned is that to encourage one gives him the big head.
As a matter of fact that is never a reason. It is always an excuse. It is rare that one who earns praise gets the big head because praise is accorded him. If he has the character and strength to deserve praise he usually has the character and the strength to know how to accept praise.
Therefore, the man who refuses to give encouragement to others is denying to others that which was essential to his own success.
Consequently, the man who refuses to give encouragement to others is doing what he can to keep others from making a success.
Just exactly why does a man refuse to give encouragement to others?
There is but one reason. He has the big head.
We have listened to a lot of men seek to explain why they never extend praise to others. They tell you they are timid and get embarrassed when they utter words of praise. They tell you praise gives the other man the big head. They tell you they are so busy they are not aware the other fellow has earned praise.
If you will listen in detail to these men who never extend praise to other you will find, just as we have, that all of them have the same reason and that reason is the big head.
These men who never extend praise to others are puffed up in their own conceit because they have come to believe that they, themselves, are primarily responsible for their own successes and some of them think that they, themselves, are solely responsible.
While they were trying to make a success they were glad to receive encouragement and placed a high value on encouragement and admitted what encouragement meant to them. After a taste of success they began to pat themselves on the back and to tell themselves that encouragement from others had nothing at all to do with their making a success. They actually comes to believe and delight in telling you about how they achieved success by their own efforts. No man who thinks that ever extends praise unto others, except unto his own children who he thinks merit praise because they are his children and must have inherited part of the personal qualities that enabled him to make a success by his own efforts. Likewise he praises his own children because they are to succeed him in the dynasty he has founded by his own efforts. He looks on his children as crown princes and crown princesses. But with the exception of his own children the man who believe he attained success by his own efforts never praises others.
Way down deep in their hearts these men think that to praise others is to belittle themselves, to take away from themselves part of the glory of making a success by one’s own efforts.
These men who believe they achieved success by their own efforts have the big head so bad and they enjoy having the big head so much they are not willing to take a chance on reducing that big head by acknowledging what others have done.
The ludicrous thing is they seek to belittle others by ascribing to them what they now deny happened in their own cases, that is they say the success of this other man was due to the help of others and he was not big enough a man to achieve success by his own efforts.
That is true because no man, since the world was created, has been big enough to achieve success by his own efforts.
If you subtract from the average man the influence of his mother, he would be a failure. However if you will study the life of any man who has achieved success you will find in that life relatives and friends who gave the man encouragement.
There is something fundamentally wrong with the man who denies unto others the very thing that made him a success.
---Henry Arnold “H.A.” Stallings, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., July 6, 1942.