Day 2 of the Live your Legend writing challenge. Today’s prompt is to answer the question “what do people thank you for?” The purpose of answering the question is meant to help the writer discover what talent, skills and passions they have where they may not be giving themselves credit. What a great question! It is actually quite difficult to articulate answers without sounding egotistical. Gratitude is very personal whether giving or receiving it. I’m much better at outwardly expressing my gratefulness of what others do for me because it gives me increased energy and empathy. By publicly writing down what people thank me for seems pretty needy and boastful which are two qualities I strive to limit in myself. So with a twist, I am altering the question to express my gratitude for what others are grateful for in me.
1. For being Positive
I don’t like to dwell on negativity and I don’t tend to allow others to dwell there either when they are around me. There is always a way to spin a bad situation into a positive one no matter how bad it is. Unfortunately, I’ve been through many very bad times to have empathy with what others are going through. It’s too easy to be drug into someone else’s bad place when you are trying to be supportive. I just try to help others look on the brighter side to give a bit of hope. For that, I’m grateful that I get thanked a lot for being upbeat.
2. For Coming up with Solutions
Similarly for being positive, I can usually find a business case for any idea and an execution plan to get it done. Long ago, I learned that if you can find one answer to a problem, you can find ten. There really isn’t any problem or idea, even an extremely complicated one, that can’t be broken down into smaller pieces to be solved a little bit at a time. Also, because I have completed many complex projects over the course of my career in a lot of different industries, there aren’t too many business problems that I haven’t seen and solved before. So, I find it easy to see the path on how to get something done. For that, I’m grateful that I get thanked a lot for encouraging other people’s ideas into achievable solutions.
3. For Events
I really enjoy putting on an event. Parties. Weddings. Get To-gethers. Conferences. Even Funerals. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to do it as a business with one of my roles when I worked for Microsoft. The ability to know how to execute both large and small scale events makes it easy for me to help out others who want to put on one. I am grateful that I get thanked a lot for helping others put on their own successful shindigs.
4. For Helping Others
What’s the point of being on this earth if you don’t help out each other? I will always help out anyone with anything if they ask for it. Listening. Prayers. Shelter. Food. Assistance. Advice. Even silence when words aren’t enough. Life can be very hard and for some, it can be harder than most. No one should have to go through it alone. I am grateful that I get thanked for helping people when they need it the most.
5. For Being a Role Model
I’ve been fortunate to have a very wonderful husband who has supported all of my choices, good and bad. We made a promise that we would always put our relationship first. Over kids. Over family. Over Friends. Over jobs. Over career advancement. Always. As a result, we’ve had a very loving, stable, calm and happy life & home. Throughout our kid’s school years, we were fortunate their friends found our home a haven from their own unstable environments. We are grateful that we could model what stability could look like. We’ve also allowed each other to pursue our own career paths. We are grateful that we were able to model what a supportive marriage looked like. My career has included a lot of traveling, fun events, meeting interesting people and much hard work. I’ve been lucky to have been a part of many ground breaking projects that have gotten me recognition. I'm grateful that I have been able to model how to juggle being a wife, mother and professional (it wasn't easy and I haven't always done it well.) So, because of our lasting marriage, our successful careers and our parenting, I am grateful for being thanked for inspiring others as a role model in many areas.
What was interesting to me about this process was the need to explain why I would be thanked for a specific action that I identified. Did I really need to justify any of the five things? Did it really matter to you, dear reader that I did? I suspect not. In the end, it was a good exercise in not only practicing the habit to write but one of gratitude. There are many people in the world that don’t hear enough that someone is thankful for them. I really am grateful that I’m a lucky one who does get thanked for something I do regularly.
Kim Matlock is currently the Head of Matlock Digital Group. She is a self-proclaimed girly geek, life-long LOTRs fan, loves wine in a platonic way, enjoys taking terrible pictures & overshares too much on social media. You can get in touch with her at firstname.lastname@example.org