A spoonful of encouragement is powerful medicine…

“Correction does much, but encouragement does more.”  (Goethe) – from the Jack’s Winning Words blog.

As adults and parents we all sometimes forget how it felt as a child when you got correction and when you got encouragement. We tend to focus more on the correction side of things, sometimes just because it is expedient.

Ben Franklin had a saying that seems apropos here – “Tell me, and I forget.  Teach me, and I remember.  Involve me, and I learn.” You can add, Encourage me and I feel good about doing it.

helping handThink about how you interact with others at home, at work or at play. Do you find ways to encourage them or do you tend to focus upon correcting others. Just your approach to correction can be dramatically more effective, if you choose to encourage a different way of doing something rather than just criticizing the current way that you have seen from the person.

Correction is often rendered right after the person receiving it has done something or tried to do something. The key is that they tried and that is too often forgotten in the rush to correct.

Maybe what they ended up doing wasn’t exactly right to achieve whatever goal they were trying to reachfans or task that they were trying to get done. If your inclination is just to correct them, to tell them what they did wrong and perhaps explain the correct way to do it; I suppose that is better than nothing. But, maybe you could find a way to praise them for trying and encourage them to try again; perhaps with some changes that you can share with them, based upon your experiences, and certainly with your encouragement. There is a difference and it will make a difference in how they accept and use your advice. Try it some time.

Finally, here is a little saying that I thought would be an appropriate ending for today’s thoughts – “The tongue is the strongest muscle in the human body; use yours to lift someone up today.” ― Terri Ann Armstrong

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