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"Act Happy
feel happy
BE happy
without a reason in the world"
~Dan Millian


ENTHUSIASM, love, school spirit, fire, energy, passion- whatever you call it all the work in the world won't be worth the time without it. If you have it, it brushes off on those you come in contact with. And THAT'S what cheerleaders are for- spreading that spirit!

ENTHUSIASM EQUALS LOVE

" And how does one have enthusiasm in life? Actually, it is as simple as this: Cultivate the ability to love living. Love people, love the sky under which you live, love beauty, love God. The person who loves becomes enthusiastic, filled with the sparkle and the joy of life. And then he goes on to fill it full of meaning. If you're not enthusiastic, begin today to cultivate the love of living. Like Fred, for example…

So don't depreciate life by enumerating all the thing that are wrong with it. Lots of things are wrong, and something has to be done about them. But focus mentally upon all that is right about life; life is mighty good, a lot better than not having it, I should think. A lifetime on this wonderful earth doesn't last very long, either. It is here today and gone tomorrow. So love it while you can, and be full of enthusiasm-"

~ Norman Vincent Peale
'Enthusiasm Makes the Difference'

Dr. Norman Vincent Peale was a powerful motivational speaker and writer who taught about being POSITIVE, optimistic, and enthusiastic- all vital qualities for any cheerleader.

He also wrote The Power of Positive Thinking, but I suggest you buy, read, and live by The Power of Positive Thinking for Teens, it's shorter and written in easier to understand language.

When I moved with my family to Iowa I left behind a lot of friends, a real support network in California. At that time Boyer Valley had a really tough reputation for fighting, drinking, drugs, and mistreating teachers. The building was literally crumbling around us. It was depressing. I'm one who's always struggled with bouts of depression anyway (fortunately never severe enough to require medication). A book encouraged me and got me through that first year.

Somewhere I got my hands on Dr. Peale's book, 'Enthusiasm Makes the Difference.' His bottom line is a lot like concentration camp survivor's Viktor Frankl's in his book, 'Man's Search for Meaning;' no matter what you're going through, you decide your attitude about it. Instead of passively complaining when you don't like thins you have to do or thinking that they don't matter much or don't mean much- YOU make them matter, you make them mean something by putting yourself into whatever it is you're expected to do.

Enthusiasm is difficult to put into words. Even the dictionary isn't all that clear, it just compares enthusiasm to things like excitement, zeal and passion. That might be why I'm using so many quotes in this post. Perhaps the reason I focused more on Norman Vincent Peale than on Coach Wooden this time is because I think that what enthusiasm really is, is having a positive attitude.

It sound's cheesy or cliche, but what it really boils down to is when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. I know this may be a difficult concept to put into practice because many teenagers are naturally negative and critical, but along with hard work, it is a cornerstone- nit just another building block, but the very foundation of success and of cheerleading.

It's vital and indispensable. And it is most certainly not lame, stupid or pointless. I promise, if you work hard at making the most of things and staying as positive as you can in every situation- your life will improve.

Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. ~Winston Churchill

"The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes." ~William James

"Everything can be taken from a man but one thing; the last of the human freedoms-to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances." ~Vikto Frankl

Enthusiasm is contagious - and so is the lack of it. That's why I need you to give your all at practice and to stay upbeat and positive at games- even if you have to fake it.

“Act enthusiastic and you will be enthusiastic” ~Dale Carnegie

“Enthusiasm releases the drive to carry you over obstacles and adds significance to all you do” ~Norman Vincent Peale

Enthusiasm is contagious. You can start an epidemic. It starts with you. The more enthusiastic you are, the more it will spread. Really, this is a cheerleader's job. You already do it at games. Soon you'll be doing it at pep-rallies. Be positive and others will come around too. Smile and people smile back.

Enthusiasm is what wins spirit sticks.

Enthusiasm is contagious. You can start an epidemic. This is part of why I caution you against complaining to loudly when the crowd is unresponsive. You want THEM to catch your enthusiasm. You DON'T want for you to catch their apathy. In this way you are being thermostats instead of thermometers- instead or reacting TO the climate, you ought to be affecting the climate. Crank it up.


“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”
~John Lubbock


"Attitude is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than what people do or say. It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill." ~ W.C.Fields


"If you want to change attitudes, start with a change in behavior." ~Dr. William Glasser


I'll be honest, I didn't just read Norman Vincent Peale to help me coach cheer- I read him because I've struggled with depression before. Psychologists Glasser and Victor Frankel agree, having a positive attitude is something you can deliberately choose to work on. Mind you, some people will need counselling or medication- but for many, acting positive leads to feeling more positive. Who wouldn't want that?


"It is almost impossible for anyone, even the most ineffective among us, to continue to choose misery after becoming aware that it is a choice." ~Glasser


"We are driven by five genetic needs: survival, love and belonging, power, freedom, and fun." ~Glasser


Glasser says that people who are "responsible" learn to fulfill these needs while helping others fulfill theirs too. People who try to me...See More


"Without it (enthusiasm) you cannot be industrious to the full level of your ability. With it you stimulate others to higher and higher levels of achievement." ~Coach Wooden


Stimulating others to higher levels of achievement is what cheerLEADING is all about- right? It was when it was created over 100 years ago at the Univ. of Minnesota and at Princeton, and it ought to be today.

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