To elevate is to lift up, either literally or figuratively. One way to elevate your mood is to exercise and elevate your heart rate. But if you exercise too hard and sprain your ankle, you might have to elevate it by propping it on a pillow.
An elevator elevates you: it carries you to a higher floor in a building. Elevate can also mean to raise something to a higher intellectual level, as when an informed speaker elevates the level of debate about an issue. A boss can elevate, or promote, a worker to a better position. For example, a restaurant manager might elevate a superb busboy to the position of waiter. Elevate comes from Latin elevates, which means “to raise” or even "to lighten.”