Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Compliments or Criticisms?

Today is an important day to vote, then get behind whoever is elected as our next president and support him in the challenging years ahead. I'm thinking how little we usually express appreciation to one another. It's easier to be critical especially in the political world where everyone seems to be attacking the other person rather than working together for the common good.

I had a neat experience last Sunday in my family history class at church. It was our last class and at the beginning of each lesson, I ask my students to report on what they've done with their family history the past week. I was pleasantly surprised to have several of them compliment me on my teaching of the class. One student said..."You really motivated me to do something on my genealogy." Another was thrilled to have found some more generations of her family on the Internet through a Google Search, etc.

Those moments seem rare in our busy lives. Something to treasure like that rare thank you note or encouraging email that you value so much. Here's a CHALLENGE for today...take a minute to send a note or speak a word of appreciation to someone, then report back on the experience in a comment. Don't forget to vote-how about thanking those who man the voting precincts on this hectic day?


  1. Congratulations. It is always nice to be thanked or complimented for the things you do.

    Your idea is a good one, as teachers we often had to remind ourselves that just because one parent was upset did not mean than all parents were. It is just more likely that we'd hear from the upset one.

    Thanking the polling officials is an excellent suggestion. That's a long, tough job.

  2. Thank you for your words every day and for sharing thoughts, those are the things that help and encourage others whether we actuallly know them personally or not.

  3. I thanked my dentist today. I can't believe the words actually fell from my very numb lips. He propped my mouth open with a jaw bit and dental dam while he injected, drilled, filed, irrigated (with bleach, no less) filled, sanded and polished my tooth for TWO AND A HALF HOURS!!!
    It was a killer $505.00 emergency root canal. And I apologized for taking so much of his time,...and thanked him. What was I thinking?Actually, it made the whole appointment fun! He was obviously unaccustomed to receiving apologies or expressions of appreciation. How sad is that?

    By the way... I took Mare's advice and found a new dentist. I like him.

    I also took Lin's advice and thanked the two fine citizens who were manning the polls this morning. It feels good to have a grateful heart! And it feels even better to express that gratitude. Thanks for the post, my friend!

  4. You KNOW I am all for expressing appreciation. OK... Now I gotta go vote! You'll probably know the outcome before I cast my ballot.

  5. Thank you, Lin, for your consistant good ideas and reminders.

  6. That's a good point, Lin. I think teachers tend to figure out what is wrong on the assumption that most things are right. And yet we end up highlighting flaws rather than strengths. I always find this difficult in the classroom. But I also find it best to highlight what is done right so kids can build on strengths. I suspect you are a teacher who knows how to lift up the learner!

  7. REading this post I thought of an experience I had this morning. I went to Hastings to trade-in some books. When I walked in I asked a lady who was standing there where to go to do that. She pointed to the end register and said quite grumpily "Over there, but I have like 5 people ahead of you." I thanked her and went and stood in line. When I got to be the next person in line I noticed that she was still being grumpy and oh so serious. I decided to ask her about her unique name and compliment her on it. It was very pretty. Just saying that warmed her up a bit and started a conversation between her, me, and the man she was helping at the time. Long way of saying that compliments can go a long way. Who doesn't love one?

  8. Super idea. It kinda speaks of 'you get what you give.'

  9. I am looking & reading many blogs from others in the blog world. I enjoy their thoughts & their creative art & genious minds in expressing their view points on everything. It is great when compliments do arrive, but I learned not to live on expectations because we usually end up being disappointed. I don't live on expectations but it is nice when recognition is rendered. I enjoyed your blog. I will continue looking at it once in a while....Millie