Of course you saw, remember Sachin’s farewell speech, probably even got teary-eyed about it. Notice how many people – some of whom didn’t really even contribute directly to his cricket – that he thanked?
It’s a big word. It’s a tough one to say seriously, in a heartfelt way, for many of us. Especially as our sense of self and of entitlement grows, it gets even tougher.
The server at a restaurant who got you your food is just doing their job. But a nod of the head and thanks wins them over and costs nothing. Everyone likes being appreciated, even if their job anyway. They might just be inspired to do it better. Ditto for your employees – forget the carrots and sticks – acknowledgement is a much ignored motivator. Sure, you’re paying them, but the difference between folks just about doing their job and those making a difference in moving the needle is something you should genuinely be thankful for, and express as much.
Then there are those who connect you with someone, those who go out of their way to meet you and listen to you, those that share your brand on Facebook, and so many people who help you in so many little ways. It’s an amazing, helpful world!
Yeah, it doesn’t come naturally to all of us to be expressive. We become a little awkward, tongue-tied and then it feels its become too late to say it. But do remember it’s something you almost owe to others. It helps you, but it helps everyone else around you too.
This is especially true when success comes our way. It is easy to get carried away and good to recount all your efforts, your wins and your brilliance, but it is even more important to remember all those little things that enabled that to happen. We are the sum total of all the little coincidences and efforts that happen around us, and must remember every now and then to count your blessings and let those who play a role in those.
Even when success eludes you, people are still doing things that need to be done. Even as you feel low and pessimistic, the way forward becomes easier when people continue to rally around you. That’ll happen only if they feel good about what they are doing for you. And being thankful for that is a major way to get them to feel that.
This is true in all your relationships – work or personal. We do need people we can take for granted, but be careful about letting the taking-for-granted-ness not go too far. A simple – “Hey, thanks – it was really useful/helpful/life-saving when you ….. “ goes a long, long way.
So open that chat window, start composing that mail or text message, or just pick up the call and thank a few people that you should right away. It’s never too late, and the embarrassment you might initially feel is worth it.
And seriously, thanks for reading the Pi of Life regularly and even writing in. Encourages me to think and write regularly, candidly and freely.