January 10

Dear readers, I have been remiss in my duties. If we were to meet in person, I would make every effort to sneak in a word of praise, thanks or appreciation. That’s not a boast or a desire for a pat on the back, but a promise that I make to myself with everyone I encounter. In trying to be a kind, loving and positive person, I try to bring out the best in others. Part of that effort involves the words I use and the way I communicate in person. Rather than leave my appreciation for you as an assumption, I do my best to speak it out loud.
Keeping with that train of thought, I try to look for what is good in everyone I meet. It’s not just a matter of “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything”. It’s a process of actively seeking out the nice things about a person instead of passively making judgments. Sometimes it’s difficult to do so. On a few rare occasions it’s pretty much impossible, but those are the exceptions, not the rule. Look hard, scratch a little more deeply, ignore the naysayers and most of the time there is something worth appreciating and being thankful for in pretty much everyone you meet.
And so, friends, I thank you for reading these “Thoughts” and for the feedback you offer. I’m especially thankful for those of you who reach out and engage me with your feedback, challenging my misconceptions, offering me a deeper understanding of the articles topic or sharing with me how my writing has moved you in some way. I also appreciate the simple fact of being able to offer my “Thoughts” and to have enough of an audience to make it all worthwhile.
Now I turn the idea of thankfulness and appreciation over to you. No, not for me, but for someone you might have overlooked. Have you been remiss in expressing your gratitude to someone, as I was? Is there a person in your life that would love to hear a kind, supportive word for you? Have you been touched by a loving soul without ever giving thought to the positive impact they have had on your life?
Sometimes we take people for granted. Sometimes, as in the relationship between me as a writer and you as a reader, things aren’t so obvious. Sometimes we’re just plain unaware of the person behind the kindness extended towards us, or their giftedness, or even that they have contributed towards making us feel better to make us better people.
Think of the folks involved in your life. Think of your interactions with them. How many times have you asked something of them? How many times have they made you smile or shared a burden with you? How many times have you let them know you are grateful or that you appreciate them? How many times have you too been remiss, as I have been?
Say the words “Thank you”. Speak your appreciation out loud.
And, if you haven’t figured it out already, I thank you all for being in my life, and I appreciate you very, very much.

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