by Cecily Markland
"The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated." -William James, American Psychologist and Philosopher
When I first heard this quote, I immediately knew that it was true, at least it was for me, at that particular time in my life. Since then, I've recognized that it's every bit as true for everyone else who shares this planet with me. But, knowing the statement is true is only half the equation. The other half is in the application. What does it really mean to be appreciated--AND, if appreciation is so important, how do you let others know they are appreciated? At the funeral of one woman, she was described in this way: "She made everyone feel as if they were significant." Okay, that makes sense, but how do you go about doing that then? I truly think it comes down to gratitude. Think about it. Don't you feel most appreciated when someone takes the time to express their gratitude, to genuinely thank you for being them for being a part of their life? It's true, that these times--these simple acts of gratitude--can be the high points in our lives. But, rather than looking for ways to BE thanked, we, instead, can pass the same on to others--we can show thankfulness to others and, in the process, derive even more than we will be holding out for a "thank you" from others. "Living in thanksgiving daily is a habit that will enrich our lives and the lives of those we love." (see Alma 34:38) Saying 'thank you' when someone buys you something or holds open a door is polite and expected, but saying "thank you for loving me and always being there when I needed you" is a deeper gratitude that satisfies others' need for appreciation and significance. So, say "thank you" to the ones you love today and let them know that they are appreciated by you. Even more importantly, say "thank you" to Heavenly Father FOR those you love. After all: "He who receiveth all things with thankfulness shall be made glorious." (D&C 78:19)
I think I'll start now...and I'm thankful TO each of you for your friendship, your willingness to share your kindnesses, your knowledge, your support and your believe in me and others! I'm also thankful FOR each of you...my writing counterparts, my sisters, and friends!