We Rise by Lifting Others

23 of 45 Moments of Wonder

Well, I am back! I am home. I am healing. And I am very very happy.

As you know, I was away for a few days having a tumour removed from my bone. This has been a very scary time for my family, and I can not express my depth of gratitude to those who stepped up to help with the kids and the dogs and who altered their weekend plans to support us this week. Your generosity means the world to me.

Have you ever noticed that there is a belief in our world that in order to get ahead we need to step on the guy below us and use him or her as a step toward getting where we want? We see it all the time in the media – politics is full of people who get to the top by stepping on the necks of those who came before them.

But what if instead of pushing others down to get ahead, we reached down and pulled our fellow humans up? What if instead of stepping on their necks, we acknowledge we are standing on their shoulders and we, in turn, did the same for others? What if by lifting others, we are rising ourselves?

I wonder what the world would look like if we took the time to tell people what we notice and tried to lift them up. I wonder what the world would look like if we took two minutes to let someone know how much we appreciate the things they do, even the small things, especially the small things. I wonder if the world would be different with just a few more small acts of noticing one another and acknowledging our common humanity, particularly when people feel they have been knocked down. What would happen if more of us were just aware and open to lifting another up?

I have felt so lifted by others over the past week. I have received so many emails and texts and social media messages of encouragement as I went for my surgery. I have had more offers to help than I can possibly say yes to, but I am learning to keep saying yes whenever possible. I have had friends who changed their plans to keep my kids safe and not so scared. I have had my wife by my side and offering to do whatever she can to ease the pain that I seriously underestimated.

What might you do to lift another person up this week, and in doing so, rise yourself? Who can you encourage? Who can you offer a word of comfort or make a practical offer to do something?

Before I left, I thought I would change the format of the blog to one post per week. But I have missed writing every day. I have missed sharing with you each morning. So I am going to finish this 45 Moments of Wonder series as I began it, as a daily post. However, I am going to try to keep each post related to a theme. This week I want to look more deeply at this idea of rising by lifting others. I have ideas for the new format that I believe will be more engaging and will allow me to hear from others about how they are engaging with each theme. I am eager to hear how you lift others up and how that has, ultimately, led to your rising too.

There is a beautiful quote, though it is unclear who it is attributed to, that says, “a rising tide lifts all boats.” Often this has been said to mean that when we are doing well economically, that everyone does better. I wonder, though, if it might actually mean that when we help one person to do or be more of who they are, that we all feel the benefit.

This week, many of you lifted me up. You sent your love, your thoughts, your prayers. I felt them. I felt you all with me and with my family. I attribute the wonderful outcome to you lifting me up. May you rise knowing you have lifted me.

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