I want to define what being a Windbreaker is, but first I want to throw out a metaphor that has been around for a while.
Remember the Biosphere? It was this community in Arizona used for scientific research to determine variables needed for ongoing but self sustaining life within this isolated system.
Within this system trees were planted. As they grew, even though the soil and water was ample, the trees became weak, brittle, and were unable to grow under the Biosphere's conditions. The scientists discovered that what the trees were missing was wind. Without the wind's resistance, the trees wouldn't grow in a healthy sustainable fashion.
Since that time, pushing against the "winds of resistance" has been an worn out metaphor to say the least. The metaphor of wind to determine how character improves if we meet resistance with aplomb and tenacity, developing into Sequoia's of Spirit and Redwoods of Renewal (I made those up. Sorry.)
The bad thing about this blather is that it's true. And I have a problem when something so intricate in it's complexion can be broken down into one big talking point, but this is one of those few exceptions.
Resistance makes us stronger if we push back against it. One pushup turns into regular exercise. One book turns into a reading. One class turns into a degree. And none of them are without resistance. Every part of our life, including putting our feet on the floor, inhabits the choice of "should I keep going or quit?"
People do quit. They give up. Hopelessness can take root so easily.
I have been fortunate to make a living helping those in difficult states persevere. Sometimes it's just a matter of letting them know that they're doing all right, that there will be pay off to their struggle. Offering a little belief in somebody can make a world of difference.
Your encouragement, belief, support, and presence helps break the winds of challenge and ease the stress of resistance.
Today, be a Windbreaker for somebody you know is having a tough time. One word can calm the wind. Your help may be the only thing they need.