How to Write an Letter of Encouragement to a Friend?
It’s been a tough week. Depression has crept in again and has been holding me for several days. I realized that I’m really good at encouraging others… but not so good at encouraging myself. So I decided to do a little role play. I wrote this letter to myself like I was writing to a friend. This is scary to post because it requires security loopholes, but I wanted to post it in case anyone else can find encouragement in this letter as well.
I am so sorry for you to go through this. I’ve been there before and it sucks.
Whenever I feel bad, the negative voices in my head get louder. If these false voices start to lie to you, I want to drive them away by reminding you of the TRUTH.
YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH. YOU ARE NOT INADEQUATE.
My dear, you are so beautiful inside and out. You have such gifts to offer this world. You are talented. You are skillful. I know that even now you still sometimes get frustrated with your personality type and wonder if you would have been better off if you were born someone else … but STOP thinking that right now! Your personality is rare and unique. It’s beautifully complex.
Remember that each personality type has its own strengths and weaknesses. You only feel down because the strengths of some other personality types (where you are weak) are most valued in your culture. But remember that YOU also have strengths that YOU DON’T have. Where you are weak, they are strong. Where they are weak, you are strong. This is one of the most beautiful things about humanity. We all fit together like a giant puzzle or different parts of a body. Each part has its place and purpose, and each body part is a necessary part of the whole. YOU have something to offer the world in a unique way. Remember your strengths and stop beating yourself up about your weaknesses. Everyone has weaknesses. Your weaknesses are not “worse”; they are just different. Don’t forget about the amazing strengths that you have.
YOUR DREAMS ARE NOT A WASTE OF TIME!
I know some days you consider your multipotentiality a curse, but it’s a real blessing! I’ve heard people say they wish they could only have a fraction of the talent you have. Not everyone has these skills, and even fewer have multiple skills like you. I know that you fear that you will become “an all-rounder, not a master” and that you will achieve nothing; that you are wasting your time fueling several passions and not being “good enough” with any of them. But I see it as a precious gift. Yes, these artists may be further ahead than you, but neither can they make music and write like you. Yes, these guitarists may be more skilled than you, but neither can they draw or write or even sing like you. They chose their unique path. It’s okay … no, it’s great that you made a decision not to give up on what you love to do. You have a passion for multiple areas and that’s nice. This is a beautiful part of you. And in time, with hard work and determination, you will master all of the skills that you are passionate about. It will all be worth it.
YOU HAVE FRIENDS YOU CAN TRUST AND YOU ARE NOT A BURDEN.
I know that you have a hard time sharing your struggles with others. They are used to carrying others’ burdens and doing everything possible to help them, but rarely get the same in return. You care SO much about others and you never want to be a burden to anyone, so you keep your injuries to yourself and suffer in silence. You are pretending to be okay so you can keep helping and uplifting others. You’re terrifyingly good at pretending to be happy; Nobody sees anything other than what you want to see. But that isolates you. It makes you feel so lonely. And you don’t have to go through this alone.
You know there are people who take care of you. So why do you worry so much about being a burden to them? I am sure you have friends who are SO ready to help you. Friends who are blessed by what you have done for them and would be happy to reciprocate your kindness by being there for you. So why are you afraid of being a burden? You may know that some would do anything for you, but you know that they are going through their own things and you can’t help but silently sacrifice yourself for them. But you don’t have to. You have done enough. You have done SO much to help others. So why don’t you let someone help you? Like I said before, I’m sure there are so many out there who would not only help you, but would be SO happy to show you the kindness you showed them. LET THEM LOVE you. They WANT to love you. Because they LOVE you!
I know you have trouble trusting people too. I’m so proud of you because I know you’ve come this far and grown in this area … but sometimes you still won’t let people in because you’re afraid they might hurt you. That you will finally open up to someone and they will drop you as a friend the next day and you will regret sharing so much of yourself with them. They are afraid that they will not be able to help and that will place them or you in an awkward position. I know you have good reasons why you are slowly starting to trust, and I really admire your intuition about knowing other people. But I suggest you take another look at your friends. Why are you so afraid to open up to them? And really, what’s the worst that could happen? Are they laughing at you? They know they wouldn’t. You do not understand? Well that could happen, but what’s the point? They can still offer comfort. Do they look at you differently? Well, that’s your problem, not yours. Are they going out of your life? Then don’t regret opening yourself up because it was good practice to make you vulnerable. What’s the worst that can happen? … but what’s the BEST that could happen if you trust them? They listen. You can even relate to what you said. They encourage you and may even have just the right thing to say to help you or give you new insight. Their friendship could even deepen. You will feel their love more than before. So let your friends be your friend!
YOU CAN HELP PEOPLE.
I also know a reason you often keep things to yourself because you are afraid that if you let your weakness be seen, people will forever reject you and your wisdom. That you are ruining your chances of ever being able to help someone. THAT’S A LIE.
And like I said – you have SO much to offer to others. So why do you doubt that you can help people? You have already helped so many people! You can be sure of it because they told you with their own lips! Of course, if you’ve helped people before (before you even knew what you know because I know you have grown and learned over the years) then you can of course continue to help people! Your smile has brightened so many people’s days. Your kind words lifted the mood! Your encouragement has helped others see the good in themselves. You have empowered. You have inspired. You have helped so many people. You CAN help people. So don’t give up.
I hope these words give you encouragement, my friend. Never forget that i believe in you You are an amazing person. You’re a good friend. People love you I love you. You’re not alone. Everyone has their own struggles, their own struggles, and their own doubts about themselves. So don’t dare to beat yourself up for it. And don’t listen to the lies. Don’t forget who you REALLY are. Because YOU are wonderful and the world with YOU IN IT is a better place.