Think of the words “Thanks” and “Thank you”. If you say them out loud, you may feel the greater power of the words thank you! Years ago, I started using the “You” part of thank you and it increased not only my level of appreciation but also most of the receivers of these very meaningful words, seemed to smile more often. There is so much meaning behind words of appreciation. If we can add another sentence after the “Thank you”, it has even a greater impact. As an example. Maybe when one of my kids calls to see where I am or how I am doing. Appreciating their caring may sound like this, “Thank you, (Jeffrey, Megan or Hannah) I really appreciate your phone call and I love hearing your voice”. Compare that to “Thanks” As a society we need to be putting more energy into gratitude and positive behaviors. I have written about this before but concrete examples may help.
I would also suggest showing appreciation for yourselves. Take a break after a hard task, rest when you need to relax, add in activities that feed your soul. Say words of appreciation to yourself often. Like good job - you just moved your office, or good job writing a new chapter of your book or shake your head yes when you think of daily accomplishments or fun activities. As we show appreciation and express gratitude to others, these positive feelings are more readily available for ourselves and even with others that we don’t always feel we share similar values or beliefs. I love Rumi’s words: Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing. and rightdoing there is a field. I'll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass. the world is too full to talk about.”. ― Rumi.
Our souls know there is something greater than competition, money, fame and success. I believe Rumi was saying” Let’s meet there” and enjoy one another without judgement or criticism. And this atitude needs to extend to how we treat ourselves.
Taking a 5-minute break to visualize a peaceful place whether it is out in a field of beautiful nature or in a warm inviting ocean. A few minutes of seeing that scene in our heads can change our energy or vibrational levels. In a state of peace we can find gratitude so much more easily.
So our goal this week can be to practice random acts of kindness with those we love, or stranger or ourselves. And remember to expand on our” thank you’s”!!
- Janet Whitney, MA. LMFT.