Champion or Cheerleader…how they help us recognize healthy behavior

There are times in life where we all could use someone in our corner…a champion or a cheerleader. Encouraging us on. Providing helpful insights and constructive feedback. Raising the bar. Picking us up. Seeing our potential. Someone who says “I see you. I believe in you. Good job.” Those can be defining moments in our lives where we decide to press on to greater accomplishments or conversely, sit down in a self-imposed timeout or even be so crushed we give up and quit.

I want to publicly thank Colorado Senate Majority Leader Chris Holbert who saw me speak, believed in my ability to present a unique approach to identifying, preventing and ending sexual harassment…and then to top it off, mailed an empowering “good job” letter that lifts my heart and encourages me to keep taking steps forward.

(Letter posted with approval by C. Holbert)


Abigail speaking to Colorado Senators, Representatives and Aides/Staff/Interns.

His championing (or at least that is what it feels like to me!) is a clear example of learning to recognize what is healthy vs unhealthy behavior. It also helps remove Purple Threads (a theory I developed where old internal tapes are filled with negative self-talk, limiting statements and others lies of our unworthiness.) By looking through an outside lens, we often see ourselves in a more healthy and healing light. Having compassion for others still seems easier for most of us than having kind and loving self-compassion.

Some people can initially appear to be your champion or cheerleader, only to lure you in and give you a false sense of trust and security. It’s reassuring to know that given the right tools, you can more easily and quickly see the “positive” impersonators for what they truly are. To make abusive people easier to spot, we highlight the differences between unhealthy and healthy behaviors. Recognizing unhealthy behavior at the early stages means we can prevent abuse in all forms including sexual harassment, bullying in schools and domestic violence. It is so much easier to prevent abuse than it is to recover from it. Keeping in mind, everyone can have an off-day or be going through a challenging period of time. We are not looking to judge others but to be aware of patterns or cycles that are the warning signs of abusive behavior.

When you read the below chart, consider your own behaviors as well as others. Some people are healthy at work and unhealthy at home and vice versa. Don’t fall into the trap of mutually exclusive thinking of someone as all good or all bad. (Besides…that sounds awfully “judgie.”) Take time to consider, what degree or percentage of each behavior applies to yourself. Ask a trusted person for their feedback on where you are most healthy (congrats!) or unhealthy (congrats…you’re normal and you have an opportunity to grow!) Please be honest with yourself as well being generous with a big dose of self-compassion. Then read through the chart again and ask yourself the same questions about those around you…your boss, your employee, your spouse/partner, your friend, etc.



I’m a firm believer that most people are wonderful and bravely trying to work their way up, over, around and through the obstacles in their life of hardships, abuse, financial pains, toxic people, abandonment, great disappointments, overt stress, physical/medical complications, feelings of unworthiness, grief and more. How we live, work and walk among people has an ability to positively influence or negatively impact them. How we treat others is often a reflection of how we see the world. How we see the world dictates how we see ourselves. The pessimist will say they are too small or weak or old or damaged to make a positive difference in their own life let alone in others. The reality is, it takes learning, understanding and practice (in other words, a lot of hard work!) to flip-a-dip negative behaviors and ways of thinking…but it’s absolutely possible! Our workshops create awareness in all forms abuse while instilling our “Authentic Health” theory and proven tools. The results are amazing…we help strengthen individuals and positively change our culture to one of unity, safety, health and trust.

What is a step you can take right now to be healthy and show others what healthy looks like?

  • When you see good in someone…tell them.
  • When you have gratitude for someone…show them.
  • When you are ready to criticize someone…try instead to connect with them to learn their story.
  • When you feel alone, confused, dumb, not enough…give self-compassion. I am willing to bet you’re a pretty remarkable person.

Respect, recognition and encouragement are part of the healthy cycles we are creating and will put an end to the unhealthy cycles of abuse. Won’t you join us!?!  🙂


Please contact us for more information on our consulting, coaching, workshops and training. Abigail G. Manning, Create Awareness…Change Lives, Inc. 720.219.3631

“…Eye-opening…positive…new take on sexual harassment and abuse…pleasantly surprised on a typically unpleasant topic…would like to see more of this training every year…engaging in telling what we can do to make the workplace healthier for everyone…” – Participants Feedback

“Innovative, inspiring and informative.” – House Republican Caucus Chair Lori Saine

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