January 18, 2011

Thoughts On Building Others Up: Allison Kimball


Have you ever known a woman existed, but not really known her?  And then you get to know her and find out she is so beautiful and inspiring that you regret not knowing her sooner? That is how I feel about Allison Kimball.

Allison and I are second cousins. Second cousins who have never actually spent any physical time together. But we are similar and I hope she doesn’t mind me saying this, I think we speak to each other’s hearts. She speaks to mine frequently with her intuitive writing, lovely photographs and remarkable creativity. I love to stalk her blog and soak up her goodness.

A recent post from Allison made my day.  The minute I read about it, I knew I had to spotlight her as a builder.  She had taken the time to individually thank and recognize some women who had helped her get through the Christmas holidays.  Just look at these sweet angels tied to a handwritten note:


How many times have you had the thought in your head {and heart} to thank someone for helping you and done ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ABOUT IT?  I have ignored that feeling to recognize another woman many times.  Allison did not ignore it – she did something about it!

There is something special about a written note from another woman that builds us up.  And so, with Allison in mind, today I’m challenging myself AND YOU to sit down and hand write a note to a woman {or women} who has been helpful to you in some way.

It doesn’t have to be a big way.  Maybe she commented on your new haircut.  Maybe she watched your kids for an hour so you could volunteer at the school. Maybe she taught a lesson at church that you needed to hear.  Maybe she met you for lunch.  Maybe she was your youth leader all the way back in high school. Maybe she is your mom’s best friend.  Just write her a note.  Tell her you appreciate her and let her know how great she is.

When I asked Allison her thoughts on building other women up, she had this to say:

I think in general we are too quick to judge, get upset and be offended. We don’t know the full story. We don’t know the secret agonies people are hiding. We don’t know the circumstances that people are placed in (sometimes not of their choosing). We see what we want to see and often it is wrong.

I love this quote by Henry B. Eyring (found here):

“When I was a young man, I served as a counselor to a wise district president in the Church. He tried to teach me. One of the things I remember wondering about was this advice he gave: ‘When you meet someone, treat them as if they were in serious trouble, and you will be right more than half the time.’ I thought then that he was pessimistic. Now, more than 40 years later, I can see how well he understood the world and life.”

I have found this to be true over and over again. We don’t understand or know what another woman is enduring, but we can lift them up, help them feel loved and appreciated.

I’ll just add my Amen! to that.  Thank you Allison, for building me and other women up.  I’ve got a note to go write.  Who’s in?

PS. You can visit Allison here.  Her post today was right up my alley!


brendag said...

Great post Samantha! I love that quote by Pres. Eyring I try to think about it often especially in my current church responsiblity. Just the kick in the behind I need. I have a note to write too.

Kasey said...

Good post! Inspiring. The angels are adorable! going to write a lett er today.

Nikki said...

Well, said!! I can immediately think of several women I need to thank!

Stacey Gerlach Moe said...

I am gonna write my note right now, before my 10:00 meeting. Thanks for the inspiration!

AllisonK said...

Thanks Samantha! I feel the same way about you!

Tobi said...

Hey I've been stalking her blog too! How cool that you two are related! I am excited about your challenge to send a thank you note. I think I will send a note to my Grandmother. Just because. =)

Apis Melliflora said...

Those little angels and sentiments of gratitude are darling. I have some letters of gratitude to write myself and it's a relief to know that there is no statute of limitations on heartfelt gratitude.

Jessie said...

Thank you for the nudge I needed. There is a neighbor who did something extremely kind for me and my family and I've been ignoring that nagging feeling I need to thank her in a way more than just verbally. I need to get out my stationary!

The Queen Vee said...

Allison is definitely one of the Queens of building others up....she's creative, talented, smart, charitable, spiritual, fun loving and so much more. Thanks for spot lighting this remarkable and inspirational women. I'm honored and privileged to be related to her.

Aiketa said...

Allison is a true builder! And you are too Samantha, this post is great!
I think I should write some notes too.