Lift Up – NOT Tear Down!
After yet another unplanned “leave of absence” from blogging … suffering a bit of blogging burnout, I think, or I just needed a break after the rush to defend my dissertation and complete my Doctor of Education program … I’m back to try to pick up the pace and work on once again providing you with DAILY words of encouragement, as advertised! 😉
Expressing Encouragement – that expression of approval and support can make your day! This is only one of the many reasons I miss my beloved Dad – he was a “Master Encourager” who always had a knack for saying the kindest, most uplifting words when someone was most in need of hearing them. I try to carry out his legacy of encouraging others, but I’ve fallen short considerably over the past couple years. The truth is, sometimes those who encourage others need encouragement themselves.
As a writer, I especially value the meaning of words and even the implied tone or emotion behind them. Words actually carry weight – and that weight can be a curse or a blessing.
I value encouraging, uplifting words, especially when they provide a boost of much needed motivation and sense of accomplishment in – what else – my freelance writing career AND my educational pursuits. It was a great blessing to me to receive such wonderful (and a bit overwhelming!) words of encouragement and support from my dissertation Chair, Dr. “Skip” Little, and my other dissertation committee member, Dr. Melanie Shaw, following my oral defense and then in their references and letters of recommendation, as I now seek more substantial, long-term work. I had NO idea, prior to reading their letters, that they felt this way! Yes, words ARE powerful!!
Dr. Skip provided this reference on the ZipRecruiter site and in response to other requests for references/recommendations:
“I can state that Karen Banks is definitely in the top 5-10% of all the students I have had the pleasure to work with over the years. She has all the skills one would expect of a doctoral learner, including dedication to task, thoroughness, excellent research and writing abilities and professionalism. However, Karen has that extra piece we do not often see. She is passionate for all that she does. There is nothing she does halfway. Karen exceeds expectations on every task and every assignment. Additionally, she is always open to and often volunteers to go the extra steps necessary to improve her project and/or work. I firmly believe that Karen’s academic and personal qualities will make her a highly-valued member of your organization.”
Dr. Melanie likewise provided her letter of recommendation:
“Please accept this letter of recommendation for Karen Banks. I have been fortunate to work with Karen in a variety of capacities at Northcentral University. Karen is a strong scholar. Throughout her professional work, she consistently demonstrates strong knowledge in the field and most importantly, a fundamental understanding of how to apply that knowledge in real-life settings. Her work and interactions with me clearly demonstrated that she is articulate, passionate, intelligent, kind, and reflective. A noteworthy quality about Karen is her tremendous ability to accept feedback in an eager, constructive, and positive way. More importantly, she acts on the feedback and uses it to improve, evolve, and progress. In my opinion, that is the fundamental sign of an exceptional person and consummate professional – one who can engage in self-reflection and seeks continuous improvement.
As a professional, Karen is inquisitive, creative, innovative, collaborative, and a problem-solver. Karen has created a network of resources and people who are available to support her to become more informed about her work and to make connections. Karen is available to answer questions from colleagues, listen to frustrations, and share ideas. She is always willing to go the extra step in assisting others professionally and educationally. It is this ability to work closely with others and understand their real needs for learning that empowers her to be an asset to colleagues. I wholeheartedly recommend Karen for this position due to her work ethic, deep understanding of how to leverage a learning network for the benefit of others, creativity to develop engaging educational endeavors, and ability to think critically about any problem to ultimately find a solution.”
So here’s an inspirational and uplifting thought for this day…
“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch,
a smile, a kind word, a listening ear,
an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring,
all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
I love this quote, because I’ve experienced the power of these seemingly small gestures–from giving as well as receiving them. It really is amazing how encouraging it is, and how much it builds your self-confidence, to hear the right words or receive the right gesture just when you need it most.
So What Are YOUR Thoughts?
Do you believe in the power of encouragement?
Have you recently experienced a form of encouragement that was especially significant? Please share, if you would like to!