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Silent Cheerleaders

Ignore how tired we look. There was a tropical storm!!!

I saw a quote on Pinterest not too long ago that said something about how we are all “silent cheerleaders” for the people we pass in life but don’t often realize that we have cheerleaders of our own. It was referring to the fact that in life we admire things about others but so often don’t speak that to them so they don’t know how special they are and in turn we often don’t realize how great we are because our cheerleaders are silent as well.

That got me to thinking how great it would be if we intentionally spoke these happy thoughts to the people around us! You know, put a little pep in their step while spreading truths because Lord knows we are bombarded by lies every day. I think, as women, this is especially true because of the influx of criticisms we see on the daily. We should be skinnier, curvier, more tan, a workout queen, domestic goddess and at the top of our careers. These “facts” are yelled at us from newsstands, on social media and from the cover of the latest guru’s self-help book. This age of “self-love” doesn’t seem very loving to me so maybe we should cheer above the roar of our opponents.

This idea makes me think of Anne Shirley saying how her nose gave her great comfort when others called her ugly and skinny (and, yes, even Carrots) because someone had once told her it was pretty. Little things really do stick with you but we get so caught up that we forget to share our admiration or we assume people already know.

For example, I am so jealous of my friend Rachel’s hair but I’m not sure I’ve ever told her how pretty it is. My friend Kristi has got to be the smartest person I know and one of the most levelheaded. I would trust her judgement in almost any situation but once again it’s just never occurred to me to tell her. I am always amazed by how brave Meg is when I’m a chicken and we always joke that it’s because she’s a Gryffindor but in reality I appreciate it more than she knows. Our friends and loved ones know we care but I think we can be intentional about sharing our appreciation, too.

And then there are those admirations outside of relationships like the woman behind you in the line at the DMV with fantastic shoes. Maybe you could tell her? Or the coworker that others speak so highly of but you don’t really know. Maybe you could just mention how you overheard a really nice conversation about him. Don’t be creepy but plant little seeds of joy and hope and goodness in the soil around you. Who knows? Maybe that person was having a TERRIBLE day and you just turned it around? Maybe that will be her new favorite pair of shoes or he will remember your kind words on a day when he feels like he is failing at his job? You could start a ripple effect.

Also, I think we should remember that we have cheerleaders as well even when we can’t hear them. Think how often you walk down the street and find someone attractive or think they are fashionable. How many times have you heard someone sing or perform a talent and been impressed by their abilities? I bet you’ve even had moments where you’ve admired someone’s laugh or the way their eyes twinkle when they smile or their ability to tell a story. If you can appreciate all of those tiny things in others then I guarantee others appreciate tiny things in you that you’re not aware of so, let’s go forth with our pom poms and spread love to those around us!

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