It’s been a minute since I’ve posted something on this blog. I apologize for my absence, but life has been full. Well, it’s been mostly full, and partially lazy. Full in the sense that my youngest was in the hospital with RSV around the time of my last post at the same time my family was in town, then we headed down to Southern California to attend my BFF’s wedding, and then we returned home to prepare for two separate milestone birthdays for my two eldest. Lazy in the sense that I have managed to make my daily naps a priority. My two youngest will only allow this to happen for so much longer, so I feel a duty to myself to embrace any opportunity to sleep. When I haven’t been sleeping, nor tending to my kiddos, I’ve been wondering what I could do for myself to feel more fulfilled in my daily life.
Being a woman of Faith, I thought I would peruse some of my notes from talks I have heard given by spiritual leaders. The one that caught my eye this evening was a little take away I received from a talk given by Ronald A. Rasband, when he said, “When we reach out to lift one another…'[No one] goes his way alone.'” This isn’t a new concept, nor is it a new topic on my site. It turns out I have 15 other posts related to the words “Lift Another.” However, I find myself needing a reminder on how I have greater fulfillment when I forget myself and seek out opportunities to lift another.
Feelings of loneliness are scary, at times even debilitating. Recently, our local weather man took his life. While I know nothing of this man’s situation, I know that the path that leads to those actions involves loneliness. Not necessarily loneliness to the outside world, but a loneliness that is within. My heart has been aching for the loss of this man, and what his family must be going through. There was a huge outpouring of love and support from the community in the days and weeks following his passing. Sadly, all of it too late. I’m not saying it was the community’s responsibility to keep this man happy and fulfilled. I’m simply saying, if we all cast out a wide enough net, we could find someone in our midst who is lonely and in need of an uplifting gesture before desperation sets in on their lives.
It may be as simple as learning someone’s name. I thought about this recently as I was teaching a class at my church. I realized I did not know the names of most of the women I was teaching. Knowing someone’s name helps them to feel included and more valued. While I have not done a study on this matter, I know it does not feel uplifting to be “that girl.”
**COMMERCIAL BREAK** Truly, I really was referred to as “that girl” for years. In all fairness, there is not a Chinese way to say my name, so the grandmother of my Hong-Kong-born-high-school-boyfriend called me “that girl” in Chinese. **BACK TO YOUR REGULAR PROGRAMMING**
Another simple way to help lift another is asking questions about them. I spent so many years of my life talking only about myself to friends and family. I still can talk many an hour on the topic of me, but I’ve learned to change my focus more frequently. The reason this has come to the forefront of my mind is because I see a similar trait in one of my kiddos. An inward focus during conversations can be draining for those listening, and leave them feeling unappreciated and undervalued. All feelings that shouldn’t be amplified in a friendship.
From experience, I’ve learned that another powerful way to uplift someone is simply remembering important dates and milestones in their lives. Last week was the 8th anniversary of my mom’s passing. A couple of days before the anniversary, a dear friend of mine offered to take my boys and I out to breakfast on the anniversary. Knowing I had that breakfast with my friend on the horizon made all the difference in getting out of bed that morning. Even more special was to return home from said breakfast to discover another friend in my driveway preparing to drop off chocolates and a 32 oz Dr Pepper. That’s an emotional and physical uplift right there. Not all of us have such anniversaries, thankfully, but there are still birthdays to celebrate.
Speaking of birthdays, I still have to keep working on my daughter’s upcoming birthday party so I’m going to wrap this up. I’m so grateful for the chance that I had to put some thoughts out there, and I’m excited to increase my personal efforts to use these three simple ways to uplift another. I would love it if you left a comment below sharing a simple way you have uplifted another or vice versa. My happiness inward seems to improve when I focus my efforts outward, and I’m all for a little more happiness in my life.