Encouragement

on


One of the benefits of “going public” by writing blogs is the opportunity to receive encouragement. I’m not entirely sure what my actual goal was in starting down this path…But I’m finding the support via kind praise to be very, well, encouraging.

Though intrinsic motivation and self-satisfaction are likely the ideals, when others validate my creative endeavors, I feel darn good. Although I usually assume praise is a mere nicety, rarely founded and often coupled with alternative motives, my mother always said of those who praised me, “Hey, he didn’t have to say anything at all.” True…true.

Perhaps, whereas praise is offered for a task completed (approval, commendation), encouragement is offered in aid of completing a challenge. But praise also functions as encouragement…Anyhow, I find it interesting to note how praise has been a necessary (well, practically) function in most of the professions I’ve tried and enjoyed…I mean, what could be more rewarding than doling out the praise to others and in turn encouraging them. To me, this is a huge part of being a teacher and something I just don’t do often enough.

Note to self: Praise more often thereby encouraging.

I suppose I’m wondering if praise/encouragement is offered as often as it could be, and if not, why not?

(The Free Dictionary has a great page about encouragement)

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Encouragement

on


One of the benefits of “going public” by writing blogs is the opportunity to receive encouragement. I’m not entirely sure what my actual goal was in starting down this path…But I’m finding the support via kind praise to be very, well, encouraging.

Though intrinsic motivation and self-satisfaction are likely the ideals, when others validate my creative endeavors, I feel darn good. Although I usually assume praise is a mere nicety, rarely founded and often coupled with alternative motives, my mother always said of those who praised me, “Hey, he didn’t have to say anything at all.” True…true.

Perhaps, whereas praise is offered for a task completed (approval, commendation), encouragement is offered in aid of completing a challenge. But praise also functions as encouragement…Anyhow, I find it interesting to note how praise has been a necessary (well, practically) function in most of the professions I’ve tried and enjoyed…I mean, what could be more rewarding than doling out the praise to others and in turn encouraging them. To me, this is a huge part of being a teacher and something I just don’t do often enough.

Note to self: Praise more often thereby encouraging.

I suppose I’m wondering if praise/encouragement is offered as often as it could be, and if not, why not?

(The Free Dictionary has a great page about encouragement)

11 Comments Add yours

  1. Kim says:

    You have given me encouragement in so many ways, you have no idea. Thank you for your grace. Hope your packing is going well.I think positive reinforcement is the way to go. I don’t know why it isn’t done more often.

  2. Rue says:

    People don’t praise enough and are not praised enough. For example, I observe on a daily basis lovers/spouses publicly slagging each other often under the thin guise of witty banter. Praise is often dispensed stingily if at all and in private as though it would show a ‘sign of weakness’….I have also observed in my own relationships how praise nourishes the spirit. In my marriage (both Leo’s!) praise is one of the biggest gifts we give each other daily. When facing extremely difficult times, this is one of the main things that prevents us from turning on each other. And we have faced some serious financial/career disturbances. My children are happy, fearless and excel because we discipline and praise them. Often when we think we can’t go any farther praise is the boost that gets us over an obstacle. In our jobs, praise is often all it takes to make us feel like we make an important contribution and in turn gives us a sense of job satisfaction.

  3. Tovah says:

    Thank you for this blog! I already look forward to reading it. I really enjoy your writing, your insight, and your warm sense of humor.Praise is the best thing in life – to get and to give. You ARE a fantastic teacher. Good luck with your packing and stay motivated by remembering all the stuff waiting for you in the closet at your father’s house 😉

  4. marlen says:

    Kim – thanks for the kind words! I like your fragrance blog and hope you will continue! Have fun!

  5. marlen says:

    Tovah – your words brought a smile to my face…thanks so much for the encouragement!

  6. gooderin says:

    I am a huge fan of praise–giving and getting. I try every day to encourage someone, whether it’s a compliment, a thank you, etc. If I see someone and I think they have pretty hair/clothes/whatever I always make sure to tell them, whether I know them or not. Or if I think someone has done a great job at something (whether a classmate at school or a stranger serving me at a restaurant, for example), I make sure to point it out. For all I know, they could be having a bad day and if this makes them happy even for a second then I’ve done something good. Plus, I know how it feels to receive praise or encouragement from a stranger or someone you aren’t really close to–it feels good because you know that person has no duty to encourage you at all (like a mom, boyfriend, best friend, etc.). While my boyfriend’s praise and encouragement are precious to me, it really surprises me when I hear the same from complete strangers or people I don’t know very well. He finds this quite funny. If I say, “A bunch of people at school told me my article was great!” or “I can’t believe it–like five people told me I looked pretty today!” he says, “I told you that same thing!” Then I tell him it doesn’t count because he is biased–hahaha…Honestly, though, I think if it were not for his praise and encouragement the last four years, I would not have had the confidence to do a lot of the things I’ve done. I recently signed on to do something I hope will be especially encouraging to someone. I have become a volunteer reading tutor at a local public school. In the parish where I live, only about 50 percent of fifth graders in public schools are literate. Most of the children in this program do not live charmed lives. They look forward to the meetings with their tutor and usually bond pretty closely with them through these reading sessions. I am set to start in a couple of weeks and I am really looking forward to making a difference in a child’s life. I have been assigned a little girl in the second grade, and I can’t wait to meet her.Marlen, I stumbled upon your site via basenotes.net. I’ve enjoyed reading your musings on fragrances and life in general. Keep writing. And sign me up for an advanced copy of that novel!

  7. dinazad says:

    It’s not just praise and encouragement we don’t dispense often enough. It is also – as mentioned above – ye common, run-of-the-mill, garden variety compliment (and I don’t mean the false compliment strained through gritted teeth). If you think somebody has a great hairdo, looks good, has an interesting face, shows good taste by his/her choice of reading material or clothes, has outdone himself in an exam, has studied harder than we ever expected, has made an effort – why not say so? Every smile, every nice word, every good wish makes this world a tiny bit nicer. And heaven and the world know we could use a nicer world!

  8. Atreau says:

    I think more encouragement is absolutely essential and in my case goes hand in hand with disappointment. I find myself striving to achieve so as not to disappoint those who encourage me. I think I’d give up too easily if it weren’t for the amount of encouragement and support behind me.

  9. marlen says:

    gooderin – thanks for sharing your ideas, they really resonated for me. I often tell people that after five minutes of undertsanding that a friendship has started, the new friend’s opinion loses all meaning due to bias. LOLGood luck with your literacy project!

  10. marlen says:

    dinazad – If only I believed more stongly in the praise offered to me…as I often just disregard it as an attempt to be nice or boost confidence…but here I’m touching on yet another issue – approval.

  11. marlen says:

    atreau – but that sounds dangerous if you’re striving to succeed to please others…a danger I know very well. Still I undertsnad the seed of what you’re saying, that soemtimes others’ encouragement really propels us!

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