Tag Archives: acknowledgements

a little bird sitting on a branch

acknowledgments using words

if you get in the way back machine, I developed the idea of two types of primary support, solution based and acknowledgment based. with solution based support, calls for help get answered with immediate or long term ways to help with the situation. with acknowledgment based support, it is based on acceptance. acknowledgments help someone be more accepting of the current situation. acknowledgments also tend to be non-judgemental.

we live in a society of mostly engineers. they want to solve problems whether it’s building the longest bridge, the tallest building or offering ways to fix the latest nuclear meltdown or a problem you’ve had with a friend or loved-one.

the other oft overlooked type of support is acknowledgment based. acknowledgment for the most part, serves as a specialize of affirmation. i define acknowledgment as any action or words that helps someone, in the moment, be more accepting and comfortable of who they are and where they are. this gets used far less often. for that reason,i want to take some time to further develop the idea of acknowledgments.

one way to acknowledge someone is with actions. recall for an action to be considered an acknowledgment, it must offer someone an immediate uplifting about with who they are and where they are. previously, i have developed a list of acknowledging action. to explore this idea further, refer to a earlier post of mine, what can I do.

that leaves words. there are many different types of acknowledgments. they all help someone feel good about who they are and where they are in the here and now. the different types of verbal acknowledgment are acknowledge their presence, acknowledge their journey, both good and bad, and acknowledge their success.

imageacknowledge their presence– this seems simple but carries great power. these acknowledgments can be accomplished with statements like, i’m glad to see you, i’m glad you’re here, i’m glad you came, i’m glad to call you friend, i’m looking forward to seeing you. statements like these are humanizing and remind people that even their presence means something. Acknowledging their presence serves as a constant reminder that your friend is important, cared for, loved, and/or significant.

imageacknowledge their journey-often times, people lose their way in life’s journey. they need help returning to center. sometimes a friend can’t see the forest for the trees; they lose track of the good they do. acknowledging their journey serves as a reminder that their journey is a process. acknowledging the good in their journey helps to remove their blinders and helps them be aware of the good they have do.

a valuable purpose also gets served when acknowledging the bad parts of their journeys, their struggles. in the heat of the battle, the negatives tend to get multiplied. this acknowledgment serves not to make an overly big deal of their struggles. by modeling acceptance, this acknowledgment helps your friend feel supported and also helps them to accept and find comfort in their struggles. they learn that just because something goes wrong, the world does not have to come to an end. as you use this acknowledgment, and your friend learns from it, they learn how to handle when things go,wrong in life.

these are some potential reactions:


these are some example statements for acknowledging the journey:

that sounds insert reaction here.
i can see why that might make you be insert reaction here.
you must of felt insert reaction here.
i wouldn’t want to be in that situation. (For negative stories)
i wish I could of been there. (For positive stories)

with these, your friend will feel listened to and acknowledged. They will feel like you have taken the time to listen to them. this pumps up there value, if only a little.keep in mind, enough littles make a lot.

the above approaches have a low judgement factor. these approaches usually restate the facts you, as a friend, just heard. the low judgement factor turns out to be important not for what it does, but for what it doesn’t do. these do not add to the burden and struggles of your friend, at least they don’t make things worse. the deeper the hole your friend finds himself in, the more important this becomes because you will not be adding to your friend’s attempt to bury themselves.

imageacknowledgment of their success-it never hurts to point out a friend’s accomplishments. this works as a verbal reminder of the good your friend has done, a compliment. additionally, the deeper your friend has fallen, the harder it becomes for them to even notice their accomplishments. the at-a-boy may be just the pat of the back your friend needed. this verbal acknowledgment has the greatest potential of giving your friend a lift since they are being recognized for something they did. some examples of acknowledgment of success are, good job! well done! why didn’t I think of that?! that’s quite an accomplishment each one of these stokes the fire of self belief, self esteem, and self value. in my book, that’s a good thing.

sometimes when someone feels particularly down, judgements are the last thing they want or need. solutions/suggestions/fixes sometimes work as a reminder of their brokenness and can act as a judgment.

acknowledgments, actions or words that help someone, in the moment, be more accepting and comfortable with who they are and where they are, act as non-judgmental ways to help improve your friends well being. learn to acknowledge their presence, acknowledge their journey, both good and bad ,acknowledge their successes along with acknowledging actions will aid in helping your friend feel better about themselves.

clouds rolling by…

tying together some seemingly random strings

a little while ago, i did a poll about if people feel emotions deeply. 6 answer definitely doesn’t qualify as statistically significant, but the results did not surprise me. 1 person experienced both pick-me-up emotions and bring-me-down emotions deeply, the other 5 people only experienced bring-me-down emotions deeply.

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a little bird sitting on a branch


recently happenings have reaffirmed some ideas and made clear other ideas. i find to be part of the discovery process called life.
i’ve  been talking about what happened with my sister for some two weeks now. some may say, “get over it.”, or “move on.” to which i say i haven’t reached a point where i can move on. and why not?
i feel emotions deeply. with what happened with my sister, others may feel mad or or upset; i feel infuriated. i mask it well from the years and years of living in the household in which i grew up. feelings were not allowed. not being allowed to feel emotions lead to them being stuffed or masked. that process also hinders the recovery process; it’s harder to recover from a elusive beast that keeps hiding. to top in off, the emotions are directed towards a member of my dysfunctional family. that makes it even harder to express emotions to her because of a familial patterns.
i often consider feeling deeply a blessing and a curse. here’s the curse. since i feel emotions so deeply, when i experience them, it creates a deep emotional chasm. the ravine that gets created has great depth and steep walls. the sheer nature of the chasm makes the travel out of it long and laborious. creating great struggles and strains along the way. sometimes it feels like scaling a tall peak where oxygen is rare, causing me to gasp for every breath i take. on the other hand, the recovery from a indentation created by a shallow emotional reaction can be exited effortlessly. the process can happen with little trial or tribulation, like a sunday stroll through the park.
in talking to my therapist the other day, i asked, “how do i recover from this a feeling like infuriation?” i felt more than a little bit disappointed when he answered, “i really don’t know since i only regularly recover from anger and seldom from deeper emotion like infuriation.” growl.
lacking an acceptable answer, my brain went to spinning; what does it take to recover from a deep emotional wound? my first thought went to what support could i use to recover? comfort came to mind. but, let’s face it, comforting is just another way to help someone be accepting of who they are and where they are. and anyone who a spent more than two weeks of reading my posts, i call this an acknowledgement. she shows her supportive head again
what does feeling acknowledged and supported really buy? how does it help? my mind spun again. in a moment of inspiration, it quickly dawned me. the real answer for recovery lay in acceptance.
the acknowledgement says, you find yourself inn a crappy place and that’s ok. and with that the process of acceptance starts. if you can’t at least notice the four ugly walls that surround you. how do you have a chance to make changes. the acknowledgement serves as a reminder of the ugly walls and hopefully creates enough strength for a further journey.
quickly, i realized the key to just about any recovery from emotional wounds can find its roots in acceptance. whether mad or infuriated, acceptance offers one way out.
as an example, i had a friend with whom i worked weekly on bettering our life. this went on for over ten years, doing activities like reading books and working through workbooks. we drifted. eventually, he decided he wasn’t getting out of it what he wanted. our weekly visits ended. i felt sad and disappointed. notice, those two emotions don’t qualify as deep, more shallow. sure, i struggled with the emotional wound of abandonment, feelings of being left alone. but, not being a deep wound, recovery happened relatively quickly.acceptance could easily be reached.
i am thankful for this discovery. the recognition of acceptance as one key to emotions recovery has already paid dividends. the energy surrounding the recent events with my sister has greatly dissipated. the trip out of the emotional chasm has seen significant progress.
life continues to school me. it has again shown me the beneficial nature of acknowledgments. being a student of life, i have also learned that one way to work on the healing of emotional wounds, no matter how deep, can be greatly aided through the process of acceptance. i feel overjoyed to add this tool to my emotional first aid kit. it’s not a cure all, there is still work to be done, but at least i can recognize one more tool to help me heal my emotional wounds.
wintery island

stay alive vs. living

” the mystery of human existence lies not in just staying alive but finding something to live for.”
fyodor dostoyensky
okay, don’t take this post as a despondent, driving off the cliff type of post. instead, think of it as someone in search of a real purpose.
depression has a tendency to hold me down by my throat and tell me i have no reason to live. as time goes on and the struggles waxes and wanes, at times, far to often, i find myself believing the trickster. i fall under his trance and begin to believe his lies.

clouds and sunlight

asking for help to find my blue sky-replies

 in my previous post, asking for help to find my blue sky, i asked one of my sister to practice acknowledgments with me. i explained what they were, gave her some examples and share the benefits with her .i got two replies from her. i  found them to be disappointing. her replies will be indented; my thought will be out-dented. her two replies came within an hour of each other.

mt rainier fron kendall catwalk hike

asking for help to find my blue sky

my sister sent me yet another email educating me on the mindfulness process. this time it came with a video.

the video has a premise that mindfulness is like living in blue sky. even in a hurricane, the blue sky is still there; it’s only a matter of finding the way back to it.

this is my response on how she could help me find a way back to my patch of blue sky.

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clouds rolling by…

the battle against non-existent judgement

seeming support gift
with accountability
potential judgement

the other day, I shared with depressionless in her post Four Things I Could Say About Depression, that it makes it much easier to get the support you want if you ask for the support you want.  sounds simple, i know, but sometimes asking can be the hardest thing in the world. today, i decided to take some of my own medicine.

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