by David Ward
You will probably have noticed that saying or receiving a ‘thank you’ has had some effect on you and/or others. Most often it produces a positive effect on all involved. It can lead to many unexpected reactions, from blushes to bursts of pride, on both sides, i.e. the sender and receiver.
Moreover, most likely your parents were the first to teach you how important it is to acknowledge your appreciation for something you receive with a ‘thank you’. For example, when receiving a gift, a compliment, kiss, flowers, best wishes and so forth. Of course it is a sign of respect politeness and epitomises courtesy but, in my opinion, it has far reaching effects that we often neglect or simply don’t see. Saying ‘thank you’ is also perhaps one of the most underestimated ways of building a relationship with others and one self.
Indeed, I like to compare it to smiling, which is the cheapest form of cosmetic surgery as it takes years off your appearance, especially if you do it naturally and regularly to everyone.
Quite rightly if we combine saying thank you and smiling they multiply out and produce an even bigger effect, on us and others.
So, perhaps we could even imagine that in some way it is also part of happiness. More to the point it is at the core of it (along with other things of course). Indeed one way to start and end the day is to say ‘thank you’. Actually these are usually my first and last two words in my day, what about you?
With this mind I wonder how many of you have actually tried it?
In the morning I find that saying thank you starts my day off better and usually promotes and prompts positive thinking, a key factor in happiness. It feels like an official announcement that I’m about to take on the day’s challenges and hopefully all will turn-out for the better, if not then ‘thank you’ nevertheless.
Similarly, in the evening, I find that saying ‘thank you’ just before closing my eyes, saying ‘thank you’ sort of winds up my ‘happiness clock’ for tomorrow and tells my mind, soul and body that once again we made it and I accept today’s events. I find that It also ‘winds down the shutters’ and helps me to reconcile with others and myself. You actually sleep better as well… try it and see!
So in closure, the happiness calendar for the month of September (Action for happiness) is about ‘the self’ meaning that we need to make sure we are happy in order for us to help others achieve the same. That’s why this month the happiness calendar states ‘you can pour from an empty cup’. Indeed learning to say ‘thank you’ is, in my experience, one of the simplest ways to fill that cup.