I was talking to a friend the other day and was wondering if something like this has ever happened to you. She was telling me about how she had committed to losing weight to avoid some very nasty health risks since her diet-mantra was, “Pffffffft, to hell with it, why not?”

She was telling me she had changed her lifestyle into something very healthy; going to the gym regularly, diet regulations, eliminated wine (a task for her equaled only by the monumental Wright Brothers first flight) and had even cut Facebook out of her life … or, so she said. I wouldn’t know. I’ll just have to trust her on that in as empathetic a way as possible.

She felt incredible at first—mentally preparing herself for her bathing suit-ready physique in wait for this upcoming spring. But a month into it and she’s complaining everything tastes horribly bland, being sober was terribly boring, and she believed she had lost touch with many of her friends.

It became rather obvious to me that she was “shopping” someone who supported living life to the fullest, calories and all. Why? The core problem is she’s simply not losing weight as fast as she imagined she would. That was the bottom line. I told her it was as struggle being a one-tree forest.

What she wanted was for me to just listen to her. What she actually needed was me to encourage her forward, which I was happy to do. I found all she really required was a friendly nudge forward. You know, like helping a friend with a jump-start for their car.

Have you ever helped a friend forward—metaphorically jump started their car? Have you been there to help with encouragement knowing all the time that the last thing they need is a blanketed and bold compliment, but rather something only a true friend offers?

Of course. We all need that. A healthy human soul requires offering support to friends, none more so than when a friend ventures into a life-redeeming that can only be accomplished in solitude. When friends require the support the most is when they’re in the middle of the loneliest parts of the journey before they see results. All they really need is to hear a friend’s encouragement. That soothes loneliness and doubt in the process as it strengthens resolve.

So, there you have it. That’s why I started this blog.