How to say “just the right thing.”


This is an exaggeration, but I feel as if almost everyone I know is in the middle of a life transition. They’re evaluating the things that are no longer working in their lives – like their relationships or career choices. They’re blazing new trails and even trying unconventional ways of creating purpose and joy. One friend is considering a major relocation. Another is trying to defeat a chronic habit of self-critical thoughts. They’re allowing some things to die in their lives. And they’re trying to be more deliberate about what they plant and grow in its place.

During times of transition, I’m particularly sensitive to encouraging the people I love. I hope to serve them. I hope I make them feel supported and empowered. But sometimes I’m not really sure if I’m saying the right things?

So this post is one I will leave half done in hopes that you will help me finish it. Think of a time someone said “just the right thing” and left you feeling encouraged. What did they say? Below are five things that have meant a lot to me. But, what am I missing? What would you add?

Words that encourage

  1. I want for you what you want for you. This is your life’s journey. And I don’t have to fully understand your path to love and support you. If this is where God is leading you I will be fully behind you. ”
  2. I’m here to celebrate success and cry in defeat. Whatever you’re about to go through, you will not go through it alone.”
  3. Life is short. I know on the surface change is scary and perhaps this is a bit crazy. But no matter how cliché it sounds, life really is short. You have to take risks to take control of your experience. Some people will judge you while sitting on the sidelines, but I’ll be cheering you on just for being in the game.”
  4. Life is long. If you change your mind or if you make a mistake there’s a pretty good chance you will have time to rebound. Time is an amazing healer. Even if what you’re most afraid of happens, you will recover, learn and be stronger.”
  5. The devil is in the details. Faith requires that you be willing to take the first step even if you can’t see the entire staircase in front of you. Don’t obsess and try to address every fear with detailed plans. If God is telling you to take this step you won’t have to figure it out alone.”

There are a lot of ways we talk here. You can reach me on Facebook, Twitter, email or the comments below.

Please share with me what someone said to you that was “just the right thing.”

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