Tag Archives: helping others

The Power of a Few Kind Words

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Over the weeks and months that I’ve been writing this blog, a number of you have left nice messages in the comments.  I wonder if you realize the impact you have?  Do you know how just a few kind words can be enough to make my whole day?  They make me feel important.  They make me feel appreciated.

So many of us walk around in our lives feeling unappreciated.  We feel like nobody notices what we do.  Our hearts are heavy with the thought that no one understands what we are going through.  But do you realize what power you have to change that for those around you?  Do you see how just saying sincere thanks to people in your lives, from the woman at the Drive Thru at the bank to your best friend, to your mom, to your spouse can have an impact on them?  And do you know what an impact it can have on you?

When you sincerely thank those around you, when you applaud them for the work they do, when you allow them to see that their efforts matter to someone, they feel good and you feel good.  It’s a two-fer one deal.  Now let me be clear.  This is something I really wish I was better at doing.  With my staunch Midwestern upbringing, it’s easy for me to politely thank perfect strangers, while at the same time be kind of lousy at thanking and encouraging those closest to me.  I get busy.  I forget.  I don’t like to gush.

But when I look around me at the people who are most successful and the most happy, they are also the people most encouraging to those around them.  So I am trying to be better.   I am trying to get my head out of my proverbial butt a little more.  And I am trying to verbalize what I am often thinking: how blessed I am to have smart, loving, joyful, generous, kind and awesome people in my life.  I’m trying to remember to say thanks.

So my little chicklettes, you are indeed truly awesome!  And thanks so much for listening.

Love,

The Fat Chick

Ripples on the Pond

At the Blogging Panel at the NAAFA Convention with some amaaazing ladies!

One of the things I loved past about this past weekend at the NAAFA convention was the blogging panel.  I shared the table with the authors of Dances With Fat and NotBlueAtAll and the fabulous moderator Julianne Wotasik.

And one of the common themes that came up again and again at the panel was the way that none of us, on the panel or in the audience, ever seemed to know ahead of time how we were able to impact other people.  It always seemed the small things, the innocuous things, the tossed off things that would find someone and change the way they felt about things.  And this held true when it came to blogging or even just an off handed compliment we paid a stranger or a moment of kindness that came at a critical moment.  You just never know how much you can help somebody just by doing your thing.

I was astonished to hear a story told by Ragen Chastain of Dances with Fat shared with the panel about the effect her blog had on a person of size who had contemplated suicide.  This woman had decided to use pills but wasn’t sure about the appropriate dosage for a woman of size.  This woman went on the internet and searched “fat suicide”.  It turns out that Ragen’s blog had had so much hate mail suggesting that fat people should commit suicide that Dances With Fat came up in the search engine.  The woman spent the entire night reading past blogs on Ragen’s site and in the morning decided to send Ragen an email explaining why her blog had helped her decide not to end her life.  Because Ragen had been so bullied in the comments section of her own blog, that woman is alive today.

So my little chicklettes, you don’t have to save the world.  You don’t have to write a best-selling novel or be a movie star.  Someone asked the panel how to help people find happiness and body acceptance earlier in their lives.  And the answer was this: just be yourself as hard and as completely as you can.  That’s it.  And you can make the world a better place for you and so many people around you.

Love,

The Fat Chick