Last night I poured out to my best friend my frustrations and feelings of discouragement I was experiencing. My husband listened intently to what I was saying and as usual he was able to hear between the lines what the actual problem was. (My husband rocks at listening. I wish all husbands were like that.) I had been going through a roller-coaster of emotional whiplash for weeks now. One minute I was happy as could be, the next minute I was ready to strangle even the toaster. Because really? Why did the toaster think it necessary to burn the toast?
Something miraculous happened in the short thirty-minute conversation on the couch with my BFF. As I listened to my husband speak uplifting words to me I felt a huge weight lift from my freckled shoulders. Weeks of stewing in discouragement were gone in a matter of moments.
Discouragement will eat you a live if you let it. Unfortunately it seems that many of us do not realize when our loved ones are needing that pat on the back. That little pep-talk that keeps some of us going. When is the last time you have told your spouse “Hey! You know what? I am so blown away at how hard you have worked on such and such.” or “You know, I really have noticed how you never complain about changing diapers/getting up with the kids at night/working at your job, etc. That is amazing. I love you for it!” When is the last time you have given your children or friend or family member an injection of words laden with encouragement?
I wonder why it surprises me to see my daughter smile so big after I have let her know how much I appreciate how she works with a cheerful heart? Why does it amaze me how my son let’s go of his grumpiness after I give him a hug, tell him I love him, and let him know I think his hugs are the best? Real question is: Why do I forget to encourage when I know how wonderful it is when I am encouraged by someone else?
Words are amazing things, folks. They are verbal pats on the backs for a job well done or for quiet service that nobody seems to notice. The lift a person’s countenance and make them smile. And though I have no proof, I am pretty sure that encouraging words are good for one’s health.
Try it today. You won’t regret it.
Photo courtesy of: Shawn Allen
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