Use Your Chances


My "A. Friend" signature campaign started in 1993.

It might have been a typed note to "a friend" going through a tough time. It might have been a letter written to someone I didn't know well, but had met - a local leader, the mailman, or a waitress.  Sometimes the note was simply to acknowledge an awesome attitude and effort. Other times, the letter was meant to encourage a person who was feeling down about life.

At the end of all the anonymous messages, I signed:

"A. Friend"

The letters were loaded with every dose of positive and sincere energy my heart and brain could muster. I felt signing "A. Friend" gave the signature more power than my own "Shawn Anderson" signature. I didn't require the attention of a "thank you" coming back at me, and my intent was to  shine a light solely on that person. Also signing "A. Friend" meant the note could have come from anybody, and I felt that would keep the person shining...or start to shine...around everybody.

Ever since my first note to a church pastor, "A. Friend"  has been a part of my life.

My book Amicus 101 was written with the "A. Friend" concept being the glue of the pages. (In Latin, "Amicus" means "friend.")  The supplement workbook that followed was even more direct with its title:  Letters From A. Friend. Today, the mission continues. I still identify and seek out people who might benefit from an "A. Friend" pick-me-up.

Sometimes in life we spend lots of precious time wishing for "A. Friend" to show up and rescue us in one way or another. I decided a long time ago that it was far easier to stop wishing for "A. Friend"...and instead to focus on being one.

Every day living brings new challenges that push us to take our eyes off goals. The little every day struggles that pop up begin to take a massive toll, and we wear down. Goals start to wither...and so does living the best version of ourselves. Life has a way of dogpiling on, and when it does, it's good to have "A. Friend" around to pull us up from the bottom and remind us of who we are and what we are meant to do.

Perhaps there is a person in your world who needs an extra-mile encouragement and a boost of confidence to stay true to his or her own passion. Maybe there is someone whose spirit could be lifted by the quiet seed-planting whisper from "A. Friend."

"I believe in you."

"Go for it!"

"Keep going." 

Everyday we have the chance to give the awesome gift of "You can!" to another person. 

Everyday we have the chance to make the world better by looking outside ourselves.

Everyday we have a chance to be "A. Friend." 

Use your chances.    


By Shawn Anderson
Speaker, Author, & Unlimited Thinker

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Shawn Anderson                                                 (310) 402-4826