It’s appreciation season! Spotting strengths in others is a big deal. We want to be specific, affirming these. Not merely that you look fabulous, but your sense of style shows in how your boots complement your shirt. And not a general thanks for being helpful, but I appreciate you chopping the celery and onions or keeping the fire going. And not simply, I love you best, but I like how you patiently explained the game’s rules to us.
One of the best principals I worked with talked about pitching it so kids could hit it. That applies here, as we want our crafted and intentional words and actions to be received and written on their hearts. Because Tweens often don’t see themselves as we do, our acknowledgment of their aptitude and contributions helps them realize they are talented, appreciated, and loved.
I have a client, a dad, who is a hugger. It’s how he expresses love to others. However, his sons constantly give him grief. “No one wants to be hugged or touched. Why do you do that, dad?” It’s part of who he is, yet he does not hug his sons out of respect. It took some work! He had his sons take the love language test and learned that one prefers affirmations and the other quality time. Now, they accept his love readily.
As you go around the Thanksgiving table this year, you may want to share gratitude differently. Invite each person to express a specific appreciation about the person on their right.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!
I’m thankful for you and all you do raising your remarkable children.
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