Tag Archive for: gratitude
And that’s the end of our first full month (already!), back home in the Netherlands.
One thing that has struck me is the importance of 𝐟𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐝𝐬𝐡𝐢𝐩.
We have spent a large chunk of our first month making lots of new friends and reacquainting ourselves with many old ones too.
As we have visited together, we have laughed, cried, talked, sung, enjoyed meals, walked, played games, hugged, encouraged, helped and above all really listened to one another’s stories and experiences.
It has been a real joy to be with such wonderful friends.
My experience is that all of our interactions together are made more enjoyable and productive when they are accompanied by genuine feelings of friendship.
I remember years ago the counsel from Ralph Waldo Emerson who said “𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐨𝐧𝐥𝐲 𝐰𝐚𝐲 𝐭𝐨 𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞 𝐚 𝐟𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐝 𝐢𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐛𝐞 𝐨𝐧𝐞.”
To be a good friend, show genuine interest in others, smile, care about them, be kind, be grateful and show respect. Above all…
– 𝐁𝐞 Real
– 𝐁𝐞 You
– 𝐁𝐞 your authentic self!
Being who you are is key!
What kind of friend are you?
When you think of a generous person, who first comes to mind?
Generosity – “a willingness to give help or support, especially more than is usual or expected.”
Who has inspired you the most to greater generosity?
I hope that it won’t be some famous celebrities or philanthropists, rather it’ll be a family member, a friend, someone in the community, or a co-worker perhaps.
“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” said Debbie Macomber.
One by One.
Act by Act.
Service by Service.
Little by Little.
Each of us can make a difference.
I am encouraged by the words of the Dalai Lama who said – “Generosity is the most natural outward expression of an inner attitude of compassion and loving-kindness.”
We simply don’t talk about generosity enough.
We desperately need more men and women in society at large to look around, to look beyond themselves and consider the needs of others. To become more selfless, outward looking, to give more, to be more compassionate and much, much more generous. Some will think it airy-fairy. Yet, it is a powerful, personal, potent, peace giving potion.
What can you do, who will you help today?
I am grateful for the many opportunities to council together with friends, colleagues and especially family members this last year.
There have been many challenges to address over the last few months and as I look to the year ahead, I am certain there will be many more.
Meeting together as a family council, we set technologies aside, we listen to one another, we discuss concerns, we make plans, set goals, we support and strengthen one another. Jointly, we search for solutions to the problems of the day. When open and candid conversation is filled with love, patience, kindness and respect for the opinions of each other, the council has always been a success.
In addition, when each member of the family is invited to contribute to the discussion, they can and do feel part of any decision reached. In turn, this leads to positive reinforcement of their own feelings and supports our family to move forward in a unified manner, as we each take ownership of the issue.
Whether it is around the family dinner table, the work canteen table, or the board room table, the principles of sitting in council together are universal.
Why not give it a go today? Focus on an issue and ask – What can we do about it? What are your ideas?
Some years ago, the District of Columbia police auctioned off about 100 unclaimed bicycles as told by Thomas S. Monson.
““One dollar,” said an 11-year-old boy as the bidding opened on the first bike. The bidding, however, went much higher. “One dollar,” the boy repeated hopefully each time another bike came up. The auctioneer, who’d been auctioning stolen or lost bikes for 43 years, noticed that the boy’s hopes seemed to soar higher whenever a racer-type bicycle was put up. Then there was just one racer left. The bidding went to eight dollars. “Sold to that boy over there for nine dollars!” said the auctioneer. He took eight dollars from his own pocket and asked the boy for his dollar. The youngster turned it over in pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters—took his bike, and started to leave. But he went only a few feet. Carefully parking his new possession, he went back, gratefully threw his arms around the auctioneer’s neck, and cried.”
Gratitude creates the most wonderful feeling. It can resolve disputes and it will strengthen friendships.
I believe saying thank you is the mark of a cultivated mind. It will change others hearts and they’ll respond differently than they have before. Funnily enough, you’ll be happier too!
Think to thank – today!