Expressing gratitude breeds optimists
Children don’t seem to say ‘thank you’ any more in public. This worries me. Not because I worry about ‘values’, but because I worry about ‘expectations’.
Let me explain. There are two meanings to the word ‘expectations’. It can mean ‘looking forward to’ and it can mean ‘it is my due’.
Saying ‘thank you’ is a simple way of expressing gratitude. If you are often grateful, then you will develop the habit of looking forward to the next good thing to come to you so that you can express your thanks again.
But every time you don’t say ‘thank you’, you break the link between receiving and acknowledging. Soon you will have the habit of believing that receiving is your due. And then, when you don’t receive as expected, you feel resentment.
The one habit breeds optimists and the other breeds pessimists. I wonder, what habit have you developed? More importantly, what habit are you passing on to your children?
I’m James McIntosh at nonsenseatwork.com