Saturday, February 12, 2011

Encouragement

Something has come to light for me lately. The word encouragement. The act of encouraging. It wasn't really a word that was part of my every day repertoire. You know, some things we just say a lot, some things we don't. Likewise, somethings we DO a lot, and some things we don't do a lot. Like make an effort to be an encouragement to others. I don't think any of us make as much of an effort to do that as we should. I guess it has come to light for me lately because a few of my friends have went out of their way to thank me for being an encouragement to them. To be honest, I wasn't really making an effort to do it, I was just trying to be a good friend. And then, I received a big encouragement from someone who really, was just a complete stranger. As I have talked about, I have dove head first into exploring, learning, practicing....whatever you want to call it....Photography. I LOVE IT! Anyway, I randomly sent a local photographer a "friend request" on facebook. Photographer to photographer.....ya know. And she accepted. Ok, great. But within 5 minutes of accepting my friend request, she posted this on my wall "Hey there, Thanks for the Add invite, I give this site to all my photographer friends because I find it so helpful :D http://www.thecoffeeshopblog.com/ have a great day". It might not seem like a big deal, but to me, it was. Because, there are a LOT of people who claim to be "photographers". And to the people who really are, its.....annoying....to say the least, to hear of people who are claiming a status or title they have far from yet earned. I relate this to riding horses. I could go on and on about how I cant stand when people say, "oh, yeah....I'm a barrel racer"....when all they have ever done is enter a local gymkhana or two, and win the fourth place ribbon for the single stake race. I realize that I might have just lost a bunch of you right there, but the point is, its annoying when people OVER-CREDIT themselves. Anyway, back to the friendly facebook post. She had no idea if I was one of THOSE people. Maybe I was, I don't think she even cared. She just saw that I had an interest in the same thing she did, and she wanted to help me. To encourage me. What a great person! It made me reflect on my own self. Would I prefer to maintain my stubborn pride, and intentionally not encourage others, because they might be competition....or because I feel like they should have to work as hard as I did to learn what I have? Or would I rather make a bigger effort to encourage others, and have people think of me the way I now think of Destiney? It seems an easy choice right? Well, it is an easy CHOICE. What is difficult are the actions required of you that will allow you to achieve that. But, I will work on it. I mean, I will really make a daily effort....with my husband, my kids, my family, my friends, and strangers....to be more encouraging. It goes a long way for people. And just like I said when I was talking about asking yourself "How do you want your kids to remember you?".....also ask yourself, "How do you want people to think of you?" Sometimes what it takes to get to that place, where people are thinking of you the way you want them to, is challenging because often times it goes completely against your gut feelings. It goes against your pride, stubbornness, competitive nature....whatever. Its that little devil on your left shoulder. Well its time now that the little ANGEL on your right shoulder rips that pitch fork right out the little devil's hand and says "Now what?! You aint' so tough now are you?!!". HA! Yeah, I know....weird analogy. But point and case....We can all be better people. Always! So make more effort to be an encouragement to others. To put those harsh, instinctive feelings, away. Knock that little devil on his arse! I have a feeling, it just might make us all feel a little better :) 

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