Nix the Language of Starvation and Spread Good JUJU Instead!

Fatten Up on Praise and Adulation


How many ways do I starve me and thee?–Let me count the ways.  Well, this isn’t about starvation diets of any kind — and it’s not about food, well, food food anyway!

Rather, this is my quest to inspire all of us to nurture the beejeezus out of one another and to realize how little it takes to do just that.

Here’s what I’ve noticed.  I love to be seen, to be heard, and to be praised (authentically).  I love to be cherished, enjoyed, and celebrated!

 How about you?

Maybe because I wrote the book,” Borderless Broads, New Adventures for the Midlife Woman” and I experienced  how wonderful it is when readers take the time to write me about their experience of the book and to thank me that I began to really understand how day changing, life changing, mood changing receiving (more consistent) good juju from people really is!

Oh, it’s not about needing to be propped up by other people’s opinion of me, it is about basking in good humor and good wishes and generous support and feeling what a difference it makes — sort of like being watered and put in the sun more consistently.

 I personally think the language of starvation that values criticism and pointing out short-comings, and needed areas of improvement has had enough play.  Even self development needs a rest as the hallmark of growth and maturity.

 Instead we might just overload each other with much needed praise and adulation for just being us!  There is no scarcity or legal limit for doing so.

I’m pretty good at doing this for others because I so appreciate when humans do their best to shine and to offer substantive food that inspires and delights me.  It might be a laugh.  It might be an incredibly articulate  analysis of some topic.  It might be brilliance in telling a story that captivates me. It might just be sporting a new zany hair color that makes my head swivel for a second look!

Most recently, I have been totally taken with Joy Reid, a Florida journalist and contributor to MSNBC.  She is one smart woman and incredibly forthright and articulate when “telling it how she sees it”.  I did my best to find an accurate email address for her (never could) so I could tell her that her skill and brighness- of- being was noticed by me and I wanted her to know it!

 Noticing each other is a big deal!  Being specific about what we see and value in each other is over the top good for health and the happies!

Therapists and coaches understand that “being seen and heard” is the highest need of humans after bread and water!  Our dearly beloved Puritan heritage has done a real number on us around this.  Isn’t this  where all the hogwash comes from about “praise gives you a swelled head”,  “loving yourself is selfish” and  “too much attention is a child spoiler” ?

Here’s the thing.  Noticing each other and actually letting words fly out of your mouths with praise and appreciation is a really cheap high you can  manage — often.  I think we are all just waiting to give recognition and often swallow it because of shyness or fear of rebuff…Enough already!  Do it!


Let’s bust the bubble on all the ways we practice a starvation diet with ourselves and others.  Forget money,  give appreciation and praise philanthropically.

If you’re sitting on the bench wearing your best bones, waiting,  having practiced the language of starvation for most of your life, then “belly up to bar”, women, and drink in a good dose of appreciation and adulation and give the same (authentically, that is) to whomever crosses your path.


I always stop and tell  little girls I meet  (3,4,5 years old) something wonderful about themselves. Walking through a parking lot the other day, I saw a 4 year old obviously dressed up for one of those all important birthday parties. I stopped in my tracks and told her exactly what I liked about her  and just  how dazzling she was.  I also stop when I see very young boys who have not yet been trained out of their innocence and loving selves.  I let them know that “I see them”.  It is so important, isn’t it, to be positive mirrors for “wee ones”.  

But let’s not forget that grownups are just as hungry to be appreciated and told exactly what we see in each other.   It’s not an age thing, it’s a generous heart thing that believes that thriving is the ONLY worthwhile pursuit and it requires all of us!










Remember in the movie Avatar when the female avatar says:  “I see you!  I see you!” ?

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