Are you too busy to say thank you?

How often do you stop to acknowledge someone for what they’ve done or how they’ve made you feel?

Most days I come across a trinket someone has given me, be it thoughtful or kitschy and playful, as I dart from one room to the next preparing for my first commitments of the day. Or I am reminded of something someone did for for me, by way of a kind word or gesture and immediately my state of mind improves and I feel better about everything.

Because the benevolence of others not only activates that feel-good feeling by triggering the release of oxytocin in the body and increasing feelings of trust and connectedness, it also allows us to bounce back from our personal challenges, obstacles and hardships. But perhaps the most profound impact it delivers is the disarming of the ego, helping us believe in something far greater than our self-absorbed selves.

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.
— Leo Buscaglia

This week surprise and delight someone who has had a positive affect on you. Perhaps it's someone you've been too shy to recognise before, or someone you've never thanked properly - through a simple compliment, acknowledgement, note, gift or kindness.

It can be anyone who has encouraged and influenced you over the years. A teacher, a writer, an artist, a child, a past or present manager, an old or new friend, a mentor you know or someone you have admired from afar, a parent, a grandparent, a lover, a peer, a healthcare professional. Anyone who has made a difference to you. 

Think about:

  • Who you most admired growing up and why
  • Who you feel lucky to have in your life
  • What others have done to improve your life
  • The relationships are you thankful for
  • The friends and family you appreciate most
  • What you have learned and who you have learnt from
  • Who in your life helps and supports you
  • What your loved ones did for you without you having to ask
  • Who puts you at ease and makes you feel good in their company
  • Who makes you happy
  • Who loves you
  • Who you love

Decide what you want to do and say and come from a place of generous intention. 

Let them know that because of their care-giving ways you were able to get something / know something / see something / be something / feel a certain way.

If you are writing a thank you email, card or note, it doesn't have to be long and onerous. It just needs to be specific and sincere. And expect nothing in return.

When you get into the habit of giving thanks for everything you have, you will literally transform the way you experience life.

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