In several of our radio interviews, guests have repeatedly emphasized the need to show appreciation to and acknowledge the people we meet who are kind, supportive or impact posivitively upon us. In fact, a couple of years ago I wrote an article about doing this every day or actually setting aside a specific day to show our appreciation. Here is a repeat of that article:
– November 1 – International Appreciation & Acknowledgement Day (IAAD)
Those who do not appreciate or acknowledge the value of family, friends and colleagues cannot achieve their fullest potential. – Nellie Jacobs
Much too often, we tend not to truly acknowledge or show our appreciation to the people who are kind, contribute or matter the most to us. If we all would take the time to do it, the world would be a much, much better place. If you made a list of all those people, how long might that be? Think about the last time you said thanks to:
• The steadfast friend who keeps your secrets
• The volunteers who work so diligently towards the success of your cause
• The parent or siblings who provide unwavering commitment
• The caring uncles and aunts who keep in touch
• The devoted friends and relatives who celebrate your joys and successes as well as share your sorrows and disappointments
• The grandparents who delight in your every achievement
• The loving step-parent to your child
• The co-worker who shows you the way
• The attendants or colleagues who step beyond the call of duty
• The teachers who share their knowledge, passions and interests
• The strangers who offer a lending hand
• The in-laws who open their home and hearts to you and yours
Incorporate acknowledgement and appreciation into your daily life. Sending an email to your list, especially forwarding a chain letter composed by someone else, isn’t very personal. Much more meaningful is specific expression of your thanks to the individual in person, by phone, card or letter.
Say what you mean and mean what you say. For example, “I just want to tell you that I appreciate what you have done.” Acknowledge specifically what that might be. Thank them for adding so much to your life, for helping out, for being so supportive, for introducing you to your partner, their friends, their network or your job.
Say it simply.
Nine words such as “Thank you for being a part of my life,” can have powerful ramifications for both giver and receiver. So, too, can small gestures of appreciation. My friend Barbara regularly brings flowers to her mother. “I’d rather see her joy when I hand them to her in person rather than afterwards place them at her graveside.” She’s treated a neighbour to lunch in thanks for the introduction to a new group of friends. Every now and then, any member of B.K.’s family wins a coveted family “Award” for special achievement. With no monetary value or trophy, it is more valued than any other award received.
Set aside a time this day, week, month or year to offer your appreciation. From that moment on, make a point to offer thanks immediately. For those of you who need reminding, annually mark November 1 on your calendar as IAAD.
Founding Chair, International Acknowledgement & Appreciation Day Committee.
Author. Artist. Creativity Consultant. Member, Creative Coaching Association.
Radio talk show: www.blogtalkradio.com/igniting-imagination