“The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson (American philosopher of the mid-19th century)
How do you feel if you have really worked hard on something and nobody acknowledges it, leave alone appreciates you for the service? Then someone comes along and recognizes what you have done and admires your sincerity. At that moment, what’s the feeling inside you? Do you feel valued, encouraged, worthy and inspired to serve more?
Seeing good in small things
This just reveals how powerful appreciation is. You can make an enormous investment in a relationship by simply offering encouraging and genuine words. And it costs you nothing. Plus it doesn’t have to be for something spectacular. Once a friend appreciated the way I ate lunch – silently, with grace. He said I munched each morsel as if it was a serene meditation. I felt good and worthy although I hadn’t done much good to others by eating my own food. One thing became clear to me then; small, truthful kind words spread goodness immediately.
Once a person challenged me saying you make friends only if you flatter, if you speak the truth, you only get enemies. I politely disagreed; you can see the ‘truth’ even in the small things that people do and then acknowledge and appreciate them fully. And the gains are tremendous – heart-felt blessings from the other person. If we can resolve to genuinely appreciate and thank at least three to five people every day, for what they are doing or for who they are, we’ll be amazed by the goodness that we earn in return.
Separate from Flattery
This is different from flattery, which is simply an insincere technique to manipulate others. Appreciation on the other hand is truthful and warm; it’s a universal principle that spreads goodness and love, within and without. Soon we realize that gratitude and appreciation is the best gift we can give not to others, but to ourselves. Studies have shown that the greatest emotional need of human beings is to feel appreciated. And paradoxically, when we offer this gift to others, we receive abundantly from the universe. Unlike money, which if you give away you get poorer, giving appreciation makes you emotionally as rich as the person receiving your thanks.To be continued….