How to Encourage Someone to do something?


I remember my parents would use many different phrases when I was a child to encourage me to do something. This was so important to me, and now that I look back I realize how these simple phrases shaped who I became.

However, expressions of encouragement are very useful when speaking with work colleges, family, and friends.

Imagine you’re going through a tough time at work or in your personal life. Wouldn’t you like someone to encourage you to take action and change whatever situation is causing you to feel that way?

If someone did that on your behalf, how would you feel? Probably re-energized, it was just what you needed to hear to help you cope, keep going and take action. Some people have a gift of knowing just what to say at the right time.

But I’m sure you also want to return the favor, and knowing what to say when someone is down, upset or discouraged can be difficult.

This post will help you with phrases to encourage someone to do something either for you, to take action for themselves, or to help someone else.

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When you need to encourage someone to help you.

Let’s begin with situations where you may need help urgently, knowing these phrases are paramount and are very useful since it has a sound of urgency and will let the hearer know you need help right away.

  • Can you please, help me?
  • I’m in trouble; I need your help!
  • Help me, please!

There are more casual phrases for general use in situations where you would like someone to assist you to do something.

  • Can you give me a hand?/Can you lend me a hand?
  • Would you be able to help me?
  • Are you available to assist me tomorrow?

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When you want to encourage someone to help themselves.

Often though we may just want to inspire someone to do something for themselves, for example, maybe we want our friend to accept a job offer. Or, a parent encourages their child to learn how to swim for the first time.

Depending on the situation there may be many different phrases you could use. Here are a few that are quite common.

  • Come on! You can do it!
  • Go for it!
  • Don’t be scared.
  • I am here for you.
  • Be brave!
  • Give it a try
  • What do you have to lose?
  • It’s worth a shot.
  • You may as well.
  • Keep going!
  • Keep pushing.
  • Believe in yourself.
  • Don’t give up.
  • You are doing great!

Possibly most often heard in sports, they can be adapted to almost any situation.

  • Don’t be scared. It’s only a small needle.
  • Go for it; you don’t get offered a promotion every day.
  • Give it a try; it’s the best thing on the market.

Other times you can use more than one in the same sentence.

  • You are doing great, don’t give up now, you have only just begun.
  • You may as well; you have nothing to lose by giving it a try.

Remember if a friend or coworker needs some encouragement because of a failure or a difficult personal situation, you may want to listen to them first, understand the problem and then choose your phrase.

Most people just want to know they are not alone, and there’s someone who cares about them and will be there to help them.

  • It’s ok; I’m here to help you. You are not alone, and together we can get through this.
  • Everyone has felt the way you do at some point or another, but they’ve got through it and so will you.
  • I understand how you feel but don’t give up, you can get through this, and I’ll be here to help you.

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When you want to encourage someone to help another person.

There may be times friends ask you for advice about helping someone else. These can be tricky, as you may not know the whole story.  When people ask me, I often try to find out as much as I can about the situation.

I would hate to encourage my friend to help someone who may not want or require the help they think they need. However, if you do decide your friend should assist them, you can say things like this.

  • I’m sure if you were in that situation you would want some help, so you should consider supporting them.
  • You should try talking to them and get them to open up. Then see if there’s a way for you to help them.
  • You know the situation better than I do, but if I were in your shoes, I would try to help them.

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What makes all of these phrases encouraging is not just the words but the way that they are said. All of these phrases will need a positive tone of voice.

Some phrases will end with an even higher tone of voice. Other expressions may require a soothing calm voice to give them stability when the person might feel that they have none.

So, remember to encourage someone to do something you need to understand who needs help, is it you, a child, a friend or a coworker?

Why is the help required? Don’t forget to listen, be sympathetic to the person’s feelings and let them know they’re not alone.

Have a positive tone of voice and say the phrase enthusiastically. Doing this will often have the desired effect and motivate the person to whom you are speaking to take action.

If you think that this article will help you to encourage someone to do something, or you know another way to motivate someone, leave us a comment below. Don’t forget to check out our other blog posts on our site as well.

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