“I have a hard time speaking encouragement to my employees”. Those were the words of a client and business owner during a half-day deep dive we took into his leadership journey not long ago. His self-awareness moment was important, and he wants to be better. Good. Awareness is the first step toward intentionality.
How Do You Experience Encouragement?
The truth is that most adults don’t get enough encouragement, and that includes you. Want proof? Take an Encouragement Pulse of yourself and someone around you. Seriously. Be intentional this week by asking someone how they experience encouragement these days. Three quick questions:
- “Who encourages you?”
- “What’s a recent encouragement moment in your life?”
Chances are that you’ll get a vague response, hinting at a greater need. What if that could change this year? What if you were consistently encouraged, and what if you became the encourager you wanted to be? Your life, and those in your circles of influence would blossom.
“EnCourage” Literally Means to Bring Courage In
Leadership expert John Maxwell famously tells of having a noteworthy CEO of a national restaurant chain over for dinner one time. While eating, his guest asked him, “John, do you know how to tell when someone needs encouragement?” “No”, said John. “How?” The CEO said, “They’re breathing.”
It’s true. Toward the end of 2017 I was on a video call with a group of leaders, and the coordinator of the group said, “Let’s just encourage each other today.” It was remarkable to see how parched we all had been, and how much courage was actually brought into our lives. (“EnCourage” literally means to bring courage in.) About a week later I was leading a similar call and said to everyone, “Hey, let’s just encourage each other today.” It was so needed and so empowering.
It’s not rocket science, but it is “propulsion science.” Do your best, and I’ll give you some ideas, too. It won’t take a year. Let’s get started!