Monday, August 8, 2016

Be an Encourager

Encouragement is something that is often lacking these days.  It is very easy to get caught up in our own drama and forget to see that there are people all around us who are hurting, struggling, need our time and our patience.  So I wanted to write a quick post on ways that we can encourage others.  While this may not seem finance related, I think it's important to remember that being an encouragement to others can definitely help us and others to be more accountable and build trust.

Tip #1: Take time to listen - listening to others struggles and being genuinely interested in what they have to say can be a huge encouragement and blessing to others.  Actively listening says that you care and shows that you are making the time to be there for that person.  It builds trust, allows them the ability to be honest and truthful and gives you the chance to be there for them in a way that you may not have been in the past.  It makes you vulnerable and it allows them to be vulnerable.  So stop talking, start listening.

Tip #2: Be a blessing - It may sound cliche but doing acts of kindness for others without expecting something in return can be an encouragement to others by simply making their days go a little smoother or a little better.  Everyone loves it when someone pays for their coffee or they get a handwritten note in the mail telling them how much you love them or are thinking about them.  But there are so many other things that we can do.  Smile, be friendly, be kind.  Those are truly ways to bless someone who may be having a bad day.  Try not to take it personally if they don't respond in kind.  Try to remember that everyone has days that just don't go right and maybe this is one of those days for them.

Tip #3: Be present -  By being in the moment and not on your phone you are being engaged and that allows you to be more open to the opportunities around you.  It shows you aren't too busy for others or their situations.  It shows you are an active participant and makes the other persons involved feel important or more apart of the moment themselves.  This is something I try to practice with my kids.  I want them to know I love them and want to be part of their lives so often I don't pick up the phone to take pictures or take phone calls if we're in the middle of projects because I want them to see that I was there and I was actively participating and having fun with them.

While being an encouragement to others can be difficult at times, especially when we have our own dramas to deal with, remember that life is that way for everyone.

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