Monday, January 22, 2007

A Thank You A Day

Yesterday after Meeting, one of the Friends told the rest of us that she had recently read a book about thanking, and it inspired her to embark on a practice of writing a thank you note every day. She has bought some stationery and a nice pen, and has restocked her stamps. She said that she was looking forward to seeing what this would be like. "How nice to start each day thinking about who I should thank this day, and why," she said.

What a wonderful idea! What a great spiritual discipline this would be!

I am considering trying some version of this myself.

I can begin right now by thanking all of the readers and commentors of this blog. It has meant a lot to me to find this online community of bloggers and blog-readers. I appreciate the sympathetic attention, the kindred-spirit sharing, the honest questions, and the good support and advice. Thank you!


  1. *blush* what can I say but thank you?!

  2. CS,

    A few years ago I was feeling a bit down and got a thank you note from a student I had gone the extra mile for. It cheered me and I kept it instead of tossing it in the recycle bin. I kept on keeping these notes and seeing them from time to time is encouraging. I've also come to appreciate the need to thank others for the little things that they do. Lately I've begun my classes by standing up and glancing around the room. The students are usually chattering away among themselves. I ask "May we begin class" and pause for the noise to subside. When it does I say "Thank you." And then begin to talk about Plato or whoever is on tap for the day. It's important to do this sincerely and not sound like I am cranky or sarcastic. Having the right attitude is helped by spending a moment or two trying to get centered before class. It helps to get to class five minutes early so I can do this. The point is that when I can feel genuinely thankful for their attention the class goes much better.

  3. Yes, that's a nice concrete technique for centering oneself before class, or many other activities: centering oneself in appreciation and gratitude. Thanks!

  4. And much belated: Thank you Johan! Your appreciation of my writings has meant a lot to me, in part because of how much I too appreciate your writings! Plus, I feel a bond because we've both spent time at a certain Quaker study centre in England. Plus I know you in real life (but haven't seen you lately) and have been an admiring fan of yours for a long time! I expect our paths will cross again sometime, and I look forward to saying all of this in person to you then!