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on Leading the Next Generation


Three Words of Encouragement For You This Holiday Season

By: Tim Elmore

Don’t tell me. I’ve already heard it — you are ready for 2020 to be over, to turn a new page and start a new chapter for your story in 2021. Am I right?

I know. Me too.

But before you end the year, may I remind you of what you’ll need to carry with you into next year. Because 2020 was a year of intrusions by a pandemic, politicians, protests, pay cuts and panic attacks, as we spent much of our time in the isolation of our homes, I believe we’ll need three items as we launch 2021.

To Thrive in 2021, You Need to Have:

1. A Backbone 

Everyone I know who was able to remain steady and strong in 2020 demonstrated courage at school, at home and in their community. There was so much uncertainty, people had to decide where they stood on issues like wearing a mask, helping others — not just ourselves — and carrying on with our jobs. This year, it wasn’t easy. We need to model hope and grit for the next generation as we enter a new year. So, relax for the holidays, but cultivate a strong backbone on what you stand for and what kind of example you’ll set for students.

2. A Wishbone

You’ll need to clarify some new aspirations in the upcoming year. What do you wish for in 2021? What did you fail to accomplish this year that you’ll want to be determined to achieve in the next 12 months? Certainly, wishing is not enough, but it’s a start. Some people completely lost hope this year of finding a job they’d like or of seeing a loved one recover from an infection. Wishing can turn into dreaming, which can turn into planning, which can turn into reaching a goal. Purpose gives us both energy and meaning. Where there is no hope in the future, there is no power in the present.

3. A Funny Bone

I think conflict and challenges can be faced easier when we are able to laugh at ourselves. Friction is lubricated by possessing a sense of humor; call it a “funny bone.” There is a proverb that says, “Laughter doeth good like medicine.” When I’m scared, I make decisions from emotion rather than facts or hope. When I’m able to laugh at a tough situation, it enables my brain to retain its reasoning skills and make better decisions. Don’t stop laughing at yourself and at humorous moments that occur over the holidays. After all, a smiling face is always more attractive than a frowning one.

Make no bones about it, we need to have courage, we need to hope and we need to laugh. Why not start now this holiday season and begin a habit in 2021?

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  1. Zena N. Cole on December 22, 2020 at 8:52 am

    Thank you so much for the positive and encouraging message. It is refreshing to read something uplifting and words which offer guidance. I am not a teacher or a coach but I am a director and I’m helping to raise my grandson. So, your words, over the months, have been tremendously helpful in both of my roles.

    I wish you and your family a wonderful, happy and health holiday season! Kind regards,

  2. Bob on January 6, 2021 at 4:29 am

    Thanks for your post. This is a helpful and catchy way to express what we will need in the new year. I am sharing this with my family and friends.

  3. Sarah Sami on January 7, 2021 at 7:27 am

    As they say, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. 2020 was the year that has made us stronger collectively. The takeaway from 2020 is to cooperate with each other and have more empathy. My goal for the first quarter of 2021 is going to be done with my thesis even if I’ve to use a thesis editing service to speed up. Wishing a blessed year for everyone.

  4. fall guys on January 12, 2021 at 3:45 am

    Extremely helpful encouragement!

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  6. Douglas K. McLaughlin on October 28, 2021 at 3:24 am

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  7. Professional SMM Services on February 28, 2022 at 12:50 am

    Thank you very much for your inspiring message. It’s refreshing to read something encouraging and words of wisdom. I am not a teacher or a coach, but I am a director who is assisting in the raising of my grandson. Thank you, this is an excellent blog.

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Three Words of Encouragement For You This Holiday Season