Oh, don’t take this the wrong way – I do know it’s the time of the year we express gratitude, give extra thanks, and (for those of us who can) do more nice things for others.
Those are gifts, indeed.
But I have a quickie turn-the-table-coinflipper to share.
See, I noticed over the years that some of us can easily shell out a bazillion heartfelt Thank Yous.
But when the Thank Yous come our way, there’s this instant manifestation of Rejection Monster that takes hold.
It’s like we suddenly don a Not Good Enough hat and we can’t for the life of us accept the Thank You and simply (and sincerely) return the sentiment with a You’re Welcome.
[me raising hand]
I don’t know where exactly I learned this “I can’t say You’re Welcome because it really wasn’t a big deal and I’m sure I could’ve done something better or different” behavior from, but I’m guessing it was a parental figure. [God bless my momma, but hearing a You’re Welcome from her might be like pulling teeth out of a lizard on the 5th Friday of February.]
Thanks to a certain someone repeatedly making me aware of my awkwardness around Thank Yous, I’ve had to work on this over the years. And while it may sound silly to those of you who cannot relate to any of this, learning how to genuinely accept a Thank You is also a way of honoring the person who is expressing it.
In other words, the Thank You is not just about me or for me, or for the thing I’ve done.
Rather, I’ve learned that hearing your Thanks and accepting it is a Gift itself. It is a gift for me to receive and a gift back to you to accept. And I honor you in this dance.
These are teeny little things in life to notice, but they can take our human kindness and self-compassion level up a notch.
And for that, I am thankful.
P.S. I’ve read that the words “You’re Welcome” are a bit out of style or that the words themselves are overused. So no worries if that exact phrase is not up your alley. Hopefully you can see that the choice of the phrase to use isn’t the point of the story.