08 November 2013

Gratitude.

I have truly enjoyed everybody's daily gratitude updates on instagram and facebook! I, like many of you, have paused each day in November to think of something I am grateful for, whether that something is small (ie: starbucks hot chocolate)
 
 
Or major (ie: the people who own the biggest chunk of my heart)
 

While it gives me warm fuzzies to share all of these things that I love and tell you all about why I am so grateful for them in my life, that's really all I'm doing. All talk, no action. So when Whitney (who blogs over at The Married Me) approached me and asked if she could share the following message, I agreed...because it's something that I ought to keep in mind while I'm tapping "share"
 
Here goes Whitney:

November is here and we all know that it's the month of being thankful. The blogging world has already blown up with post series on what people are thankful for each day and stories that are to remind us that we have it good. However I think most of those posts are pretty shallow (not intentionally). I'm not immune to writing a post that tells my husband how thankful I am for him, but in all reality if he doesn't read that blog post he'd never really know. I also believe the the old adage that actions speak louder than words is true.

In our day to day lives we do nice things for others such as hold the door open or share a snack and gracious "thank you"s are exchanged from all. We recognize them and appreciate them but those are common courtesy type thank yous. Now think of how you feel when someone goes a step farther and hand writes you a thank you card in appreciation for something nice you have done. Warm fuzzies come to mind, right? How about when a thoughtful gift (no matter how small) is attached to said thank you note, showing that the person put even more thought and effort into their thank you. I can almost bet you will feel pretty darn special and have a grin on your face for the rest of the day.

I can also bet that if you are the person doing good deeds that you start to get fatigued when no appreciation is shown. It's just common knowledge that the more appreciation you are shown for what you do, the more likely you are to continue the cycle of good deeds. Appreciation and thankfulness multiply within the world and lets face it this world needs more good deeds and positivity!

The past month or so I've challenged myself to show more appreciation. I just graduated from college in May and started a career in nursing. I had a fantastic preceptor my last semester and as I was acclimating to my new job I heard her voice inside my head so many times, guiding me yet. I knew that I needed to let her know what an impact she had made on me so I reconnected with her over texting for her address and sent her a small gift and a letter of my appreciation. From her thank you in return I could really tell that act of appreciation had the desired effect. She wanted to make a difference in this world and I proved to her that she made a difference in mine!

I don't have my actual letter but this was her thank you in return.
I don't have my actual letter but this was her thank you in return.

I took another opportunity to be thankful on Boss' Day, by purchasing a small bouquet of flowers for a supervisor from work. All of the supervisors at my job work extremely hard and wear a variety of hats. In return they don't get near enough appreciation, instead they get pulled a million different directions, soothe the disgruntled patients and family and get called to fix all the problems. Their job is not to get brought into the best of situations, they fix the messes. After some tough shifts I thought it was only fitting that I show her I appreciated all the work that she did.

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I think what surprised me most about this journey was that I ended up being on the receiving end. Just last week I received a thank you note from a (different) supervisor in the mail, thanking me for staying over at work one morning to help the understaffed day shift get started on the right foot. It was not a thank you note that I was expecting, but boy was it a pleasant surprise! It's nice to know that people appreciate the extra effort. The thankful spirit I sent out into the world already made its way back around to me!

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My challenge to you is to take this month to put some action to your words. Has there been someone who has made your job easier lately? Is there someone who has impacted the way you live your life? Do they know that? I challenge you to purchase some thank you notes and start writing. You can even send a heartfelt email. But lets get off the social media shout outs and nonchalant verbal spouts of appreciation and put some real action behind our words and spread some positivity in this world.
 
Do you have someone in mind?
 

1 comment

Shayla Smith said...

hold the phone.. is that cookie from starbucks as well? it looks AMAZING.


also, I really appreciate this post. One of the things I've been trying to get in the habit of, is writing letters to friends. even if it's just one a month. (but hopefully more). It's a lot harder than you'd think. I'm accepting your challenge, though, and I'll sit down and write tonight. There are SO many people in my life who have impacted it in the way you were talking about. So many great great people.
I can't wait.

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