Man wishes to be confirmed in his being by man, and wishes to have a presence in the being of the other….Secretly and bashfully he watches for a YES which allows him to be and which can come to him only from one human person to another.

Martin Buber

Children given the best physical care but not affirmation or confirmation in the terms of play, attention, and human  interaction fall into a depression called by psychiatrist Rene Spitz anaclitic.  The name of this  depression means “no one to lean on.”  In the most extreme cases, called marasmus,  children  waste away as if starving;   and indeed such children are starved but not for food as much as for  human attention.

Children are not, however, the only one needing conformation or validation from another human being.   As adulthood is reached, however,  affirmations fall away.   We applaud a baby’s efforts to master the world, but forget that adults need the same applause for staying strong through all of life’s many struggles.   This film, longer than I usually post–16 minutes, makes clear that validation  is fuel for well-being.

YouTube – Validation.   Validation stars TJ Thyne & Vicki Davis. Writer/Director/Composer – Kurt Kuenne.  Winner – Best Narrative Short, Cleveland Int’l Film Festival, Winner – Jury Award, Gen Art Chicago Film Festival, Winner – Audience Award, Hawaii Int’l Film Festival, Winner – Best Short Comedy, Breckenridge Festival of Film, Winner – Crystal Heart Award, Best Short Film & Audience Award, Heartland Film Festival, Winner – Christopher & Dana Reeve Audience Award, Williamstown Film Festival, Winner – Best Comedy, Dam Short Film Festival, Winner – Best Short Film, Sedona Int’l Film Festival.

Staying Strong Tip:  The Daily Emotional Fitness Exercise that encourages you to Practice Kindness and to do so simply by offering those you meet genuine compliments and validation.  A sincere “Thank you” is one way, sincere compliments another.   One of the things I miss about New York was the crowds of people who made giving out compliments so easy.  Strangers shine with pleasure when you take a few seconds to say “Love your coat” or “Great tie” or “Great haircut”  or “Your smile makes me smile.”  As you go about your day, try to find something to compliment in every person you speak to.  It costs nothing and strengthens two people–the other and you.   Stay strong.

Agree or disagree, comments are always welcomed.

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