"The Power in Praising Your Family"

Chris Widener

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One of the keys to success is to have successful relationships. We are not islands and we don't get to the top by ourselves. And one of the key ways to grow successful in our relationships is to be "life-giving" people to others. With every person we meet, we either give life to or take life from.

You know what I mean. There are people who encourage you and after spending time with them you feel built up. Then there are others who make you feel torn down. Successful people are people who have mastered the art of building up others. This is especially true of our families.

One of the ways we build up our families is to praise them. There is power in praising people! Something begins to happen in them, in you, and in your relationship when you praise someone. Can you remember a time when someone told you something about you in a praising manner? It was great, wasn't it? You probably liked that person more after they praised you, didn't you?

Now I am not talking about praising people for the sake of praising people. I am talking about honestly looking for and praising positive character traits and actions of your spouse and children. Don't lie to them. If they have done something wrong, correct it, but when they do something right, praise it!

With that said, here are benefits of and ways to start praising the people in your family.


Your relationship grows. Life is about relationshipsófamily relationships, friends and co-workers. When we begin to praise people for their positive aspects, our relationships grow. It puts them, and us, on the fast track. Your leadership and influence grows. Who is going to have greater relationships, the one who tears down or the one who builds up?

Stronger relationships and loyalty. When the person is appreciated and praised, they become fiercely loyal, because they know that you care for them, love them and appreciate them. This will take you to success.

Happier, more fulfilled people. I truly believe it is our job to build the members of our family up and that they need it. There will always be others who come along to tear them down; it is our job to instill in them the power of praise!

Some Ways to Praise:

Character traits. Is your wife joyful? Is your husband hard-working? Is your son or daughter honest? Then let them know how much you appreciate that in them. Say something like this, "You know Tom, I think it is great that you are such a hard-worker. You really set a good example and I want you to know how much I appreciate that." Simple!

Action. Same idea as above. "Sue, I don't know if I have ever told you this, but I love how you always take action on the things you believe in. Thanks for that."

Other ways you can show praise and appreciation is with a card or a gift.

Make it your goal to praise every member of your family at least once each day. If you can, praise them a few times a day. It will take work but it is possible. It just takes discipline and a little work.

Any way you cut it, there is power in praising people. If you are serious about healthy family relationships, this is a great place to start!

Questions for Reflection:

Q. Do you know the best way to express love to your spouse so they interpret it as love and can appreciate it the most? Do you tell your spouse and kids that you love them each and every day?

Q. Would your family characterize you as having a serving attitude and heart toward the rest of the family? Why or why not? In what ways could you become a person who serves better?

Q. Are your family relationships characterized by honest and open communication? If not, what is the hindrance? What could you do to open up the communication?

Q. Are you patient with your spouse and children? Who are you most patient with? What are the things that trigger a lack of patience in you? How can you improve in that area?

Q. When was the last time you had funóreal funówith each member of your family? What kinds of fun things do you like to do with your spouse? What kinds of fun things do you like to do with your kids? More importantly, what fun things do they like to do with you?