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Appreciation and Gratitude Begins with Awareness

2013 July 26

It’s all a matter of awareness, being in the present moment … the magic in this world seems to work in whispers and small kindnesses. ~Author Unknown

Appreciation, gratitude and awarenessRecovering perfectionist that I am, at the one-year anniversary of this blog I decided to go back to the first post and work my way forward, reviewing – tweaking here and there – improving articles and SEO where I could. That “review” has become an annual tradition that I carry out each summer. Of course 380 articles later it was a whole lot easier that first year than it is now heading into the 4th. But it’s still an important ritual for me, and one of the “perks” is being able to occasionally share an earlier post that had merit, but because of being the new kid on the virtual block, few people got around to reading.

Today I’d like to revisit a short TED Talk by Dr. Laura Trice on the value of appreciation and praise. Of course volumes have been written about the value of expressing gratitude toward others, but most people draw the line when it comes to daring to ask for appreciation for their own actions. Some would even say that this is downright egotistical – but is it, really?

After all, we teach people how to treat us, and can you imagine what a positive difference it would make in the quality of your life if this gratitude thing inherently flowed both ways?

Heartfelt Gratitude Begins with Awareness

Charles Plumb was a U.S. Navy jet pilot who served in Vietnam. One day, Charles and his wife were in a restaurant when a man came up and said, “You’re Plumb, aren’t you? You flew jet fighters in Vietnam from the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk and you were shot down!”

“How in the world did you know that?” asked Plumb.

“I packed your parachute.” the man replied. Plumb gasped in surprise and gratitude. The man pumped his hand and said, “I guess it worked!”

Plumb assured him, “It sure did. If your chute hadn’t worked, I wouldn’t be here today.”

Plumb couldn’t sleep that night, thinking about the man who had literally held his fate in his hands. “I wonder how many times I might have seen him and not even said ‘Good morning, how are you?’ or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot and he was just a sailor.

“Sometimes in the daily challenges that life gives us, we miss what is really important. We may fail to say hello, please or thank you, congratulate someone on something wonderful that has happened to them, give a compliment, or just do something nice for no reason.” Charles Plumb


As you go through this day, this week, why not take a moment to thank the people who pack your parachutes … and while you’re at it, give some thought to where you could use a little praise and acknowledgement for the things you do for others. It’s just as important for you to learn to ask for what you need, as it is for you to ask others what they need to feel appreciated.

Dr. Laura Trice is a therapist and coach, devoted to practices that help people find fulfillment. She’s created a therapeutic program called Writing in Recovery that uses creative skills such as journaling and music to help people develop better self-awareness and set goals.

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4 Responses
  1. August 7, 2013

    I do email with a few bloggers but never thought to email many, Always thought everyone got too much email. Getting an address is nice too and you could always send something nice along to someone who goes out of their way to help you out you sure got me thinking Donna!

  2. July 29, 2013

    Marty, you are inspiration to all writers and non-writers alike out there … with your quantity, yes. But more so with your quality. You continue to provide what I like to call our daily dose of caffeine for the soul.

    I love the idea of going back and re-reading old articles. It gives you such a great sense of where you have come from. When things seem to change so slowly, it gives you the opportunity to see just how far we have progressed in our journey.

    Thank you for helping to pack our parachutes with material that keeps us positive on those less than perfect days ;-)
    Dave recently posted..A life well livedMy Profile

    • July 29, 2013

      As always, you are so kind Dave. As right as you are about the value of seeing how far we’ve come, there’s actually a practical side to this annual exercise of mine. One of my favorite WP plugins randomly retweets old posts, and I continue to polish them because several times a week new readers discover IGG by linking to those older posts. :-)
      Marquita Herald recently posted..Appreciation and Gratitude Begins with AwarenessMy Profile

  3. July 26, 2013

    Hi, Marty, congratulations – keeping up a quality blog like yours is hard work and dedication, and a lot of love. I get your posts delivered to my email every week and look forward to your cheery words. Thanks again. PS I’m not sure I ever downloaded your free eBook for my subscription. I’ll have to look for it. Sounds awesome, and I have a zillion eBooks on my Kindle and cloud reader, so I could have mislaid it. Will look right now and get back to you when I’ve read it, will leave a review if you like. God bless you there in Hawaii, from the Wilds of Canada.
    Kenna McKinnon recently posted..MY 7 (LUCKY NUMBER) FAVORITE BLOGSMy Profile

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