“The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves.” ~Helen Keller
The other day I sent my dear friend an email. It was a link to a piece I had written and I wanted her to see it.
She wrote back so encouragingly, so quickly, so completely excited—just like she always does.
I smiled and replied to thank her and I found myself saying:
“Everyone needs a cheerleader. Thanks for being mine.” (Tweet that! Tag someone!)
As soon as I hit send, I thought about how true this is.
We all need a cheerleader in our lives. Depending on our age and circumstances, these cheerleaders often appear in different forms.
It’s our parents right before a big recital or big game, letting us know they’ll be in the front row to watch our triumphs or catch us if we fall. It’s our teachers who see something in us and say just the thing that hits a nerve, right when we feel like giving up. It’s our friends pushing us out of our comfort zones, into new and beautiful territories. It’s our colleagues supporting an idea we think of as far-fetched, inspiring us to give it a shot. It’s our significant other, giving us loving reassurance in our lowest middle-of-the-night, total despair moments.
The list goes on and on. I know if we stop to think about it, there’s someone or a bunch of someone’s that cheered us on when we needed it most.
We forget that, though.
It’s easier to remember the naysayers, the doubters, the haters. It’s easier to remember that one negative comment that cut your heart in half, the words of discouragement that left you full of doubt, the rejections and the failures, the missteps and the falls.
Are there bad times, moments we could have, should have done better? Maybe. Of course. But those are also the memories that push us forward, striving us to do better, to try harder, to learn more—and the same ones that make the triumphs that much sweeter.
Let’s not forget the triumphs. Let’s not forget the small victories that slowly add up to the glorious successes we always remember. Let’s not forget who cheered us on, the ones who shrugged off our stumbles, knowing it was all working out in a way we couldn’t yet see for ourselves.
Who’s cheering you on today? Who can you thank for the little things that person does that are really so much more significant than they know?
Who are you cheering on today? Who needs a little extra love and support, encouragement and faith? What can you do to make sure they get it?
“We have a mission to others—to add to their cheer. This we cannot do unless we have first learned the lesson of cheerfulness ourselves.” ~James Russell Miller
Thank you for the subtle ways people show their faith in us, especially when we need to be cheered on most.