Why You Should (And How You Can) Develop The Power Of Praise
Do you recall a time when praise gave you a lift?
I’ve enjoyed recreational swimming ever since my college roommate and I signed up for an endurance swimming class in our sophomore year. However, over time my stroke had become a diminished version of its former self – it had gotten a little sloppy. So I recently asked a life guard at the local pool to give me some pointers as I did laps. After a few weeks of fighting the water (as he looked on grimly), I heard him say, “That was decent.” And it brought a smile to my face.
We all enjoy and need praise! But did you know that praise is actually a two-way street? Let’s look closer at its benefits, and how you can develop the practice of praise in your own life.
It’s important to realize that each one of us is wired for validation. Self-esteem, the buzzword of our times, is a misnomer. None of us can simply approve of ourselves. People with good self-esteem got it from somewhere else first. They got it from someone else first, someone who first gave them approval and affirmation.
Given this deep and basic need of the human heart, when you praise another person, you give them a wonderful gift. But the gift is also to the giver. As we express our praise for others, it opens our own hearts to the blessings that surround us. It builds our awareness of what we have to be grateful for. Giving praise shines a spotlight on the grace that is already shining in on our lives.
How can you develop the life-giving and life-filling practice of praise?
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(photo credit: asenat29)