Praise is just as important as warning. How many times have you mentally praised someone for a change in attitude and forgotten to verbalize it?
Certainly we remember more to demand changes than to praise, when everything is fine we tend not to pay attention to the behavioral changes of those we live with, but when people do something that displeases us, we soon notice and get upset.
Now bringing it to a more specific topic, I have an 11 year old brother and like any child, sometimes he is a bit fumbling or doesn’t want to do what was asked of him at the time he should have done it and recently I realized that I as a sister was taking the wrong approach by just criticizing him about these things.
Of course I can admonish him to be more committed to his tasks, but how many times has he done what he was supposed to do and come to me happy, and I in turn said “that’s very good, but it could always be like this”. I praised him, but soon after charged him for an attitude that he was already trying to change.
Maybe in your case the person you need to praise the most is your son, your husband, your wife, whoever it is, sincere praise for a job well done has a positive impact. When a person receives praise, he or she feels encouraged to continue doing a good job.
A discouraged person may feel comforted to find that someone recognizes his effort and progress.
What does the Bible say about praise?
The Bible says that we should not do things seeking praise or recognition (Philippians 2:3; 2 Corinthians 10:18; Matthew 6). But it also says that we should honor those who are worthy of honor, that is, praise those who have done something that was worthy of recognition.
Paul begins his first epistle to the Thessalonians by giving them praise. He praises their hardworking faith, the self-denial of their love, and the steadfastness of the hope that they have Jesus Christ (1 Thessalonians 1:3). And he recognizes that they have become imitators of the master, being examples to the believers in Macedonia and Achaia (1 Thessalonians 1:6-7). See what a tremendous compliment!
Try to recognize progress in those around you. Each of us has a different pace of progress and learning. So be attentive to small and large changes, after all, encouragement can be an excellent stimulus to change behavior.
It is also worth remembering: when praising, be sincere! Don’t overdo the flattering words. Speak only the truth and show what you really believe in what you have said, so don’t praise just for the sake of praising, because even children notice this kind of falsehood.