Want to make a positive impact? Appreciate them!
Showing appreciation and thanking people comes easy for some. For others, it is quite the chore. Easy or not, it is a very important component of elevating interpersonal relationships.
In The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace Gary Chapman and Paul White make the case for why it is so important to give and receive appreciation. One source they highlight is Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The authors point out that Covey “feels so strongly about people’s need for appreciation that he states: ‘Next to physical survival, the greatest need of a human being is psychological survival, to be understood, to be affirmed, to be validated, to be appreciated.’” (Kindle location 237) Much of the research in the field of happiness, gratitude, and positivity strengthens Covey’s thesis.
This should not be any surprise to those who trust and follow Jesus Christ. For example, we are told in Romans 12:
Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Romans 12:9-15 (ESV)
Contemporary scholars in the field of healthy relationships are quite excited to discover the physiological nature of sincere love (conveying brotherly affection and outdoing each other in showing honor) and the positive social influence of empathy (rejoicing with those who rejoice and weeping with those who weep). The profound impact of this positive relational conduct by followers of Jesus upon families, villages, communities, and other levels of societies is well documented.
The benefits for the practice of appreciation have been written about and fairly well established in the field of neuroscience and social sciences. The emphasis in the articles and books has been on its positive effects on the individual and upon interpersonal associations.
Therefore, appreciation is quite important in many ways, especially because it can make a positive impact on other people.
The above is an excerpt from ThanksLiving: How to Gain a Perspective to Enrich Your Life. You can purchase a copy by clicking on the button below.