~ Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)
There are times in our lives when we need someone to encourage us, either through words or in the midst of comfort through silence. Too often we brush the value of encouragement aside, often taking it for granted when it is given by others, or benefiting from the encourager, but never reciprocating encouragement to the people in our lives.
Being an encourager does not simply mean to give periodic support, confidence or hope to someone. It means to actually build up, inspire, and empower someone to become what he/she is capable of, and then stepping back to watch him/her flourish and mature. As such, being an encourager for someone is a lifetime investment and a critical factor in mentorship.
How often do we realize the potential in another but only offer periodic episodes of encouragement? How often do we realize that, as an individual, we are full of potential, but there are no encouragers in our lives to help us grow? Unfortunately, herein lies the problem with today’s society. We are so focused on the self that we forget the importance of another human being.
Self-centeredness is not sustainable.
Instead, it is through giving that we sustain not only our own being, but also others around us. Start by giving simple words of encouragement to those in your life and then invest a little more over time. As an encourager, you will not only see the impact that you have in another person’s life, but will also receive a sense of tremendous joy that can never be taken away. Therefore, becoming an encourager lends oneself the privilege of not only positively sustaining another person, but also sustaining the self.