The Power of Encouragement

Like many people in Vancouver, I ride my bike to commute to and from work.  On my way to work I get to fly downhill.  Of course this means that on my way back home I have a bit of a grueling uphill.  And each and every time, without exception, I have to work just as hard with my mind to cheer myself on, to convince myself that I can indeed ride to the top of that hill and live to tell about it.  

Well, on one particular ride up this hill the voice in my head said, "Nope - can't do it.  Gotta get off and walk it." But I didn't quite buy into it 100%.  At that moment, two women were walking on the sidewalk beside me and so I shouted out to them, "Quick!  Say something encouraging to help me get up this hill!"  With big smiles on their faces they yelled, "You can do it!  I believe in you!  Eye of the tiger!"  That last one was my personal favorite :) .  And suddenly I had an extra burst of energy to help propel me up that hill!  The women were laughing as they cheered me on.  Not only had they helped me to get up that hill, but for a fleeting moment in time a lovely interaction was shared between myself and my fellow human beings.

Sometimes the encouragement comes from the outside and sometimes we need to be our own cheerleader or motivational speaker to quiet the naysayer in our head.  And sometimes we get off the bike and walk up the hill - and that's okay too.