A new way to re­ceive ap­pre­ci­a­tion

Why is it hard to re­ceive an ap­pre­ci­a­tion? None of us wants to be like the per­son who takes in the ap­pre­ci­a­tion and then feels that they are the great­est hu­man be­ing on the planet.

Living Now - - Contents - by Joyce Vis­sell

How do you han­dle ac­knowl­edg­ment from oth­ers? There are two types of ac­knowl­edg­ment. There are com­pli­ments which are more su­per­fi­cial and can in­volve things such as the clothes or jew­ellery we are wear­ing, the car we drive, the beau­ti­ful dog walk­ing by our side or our adorable baby. If these com­pli­ments are pure and not part of some­one try­ing to pick you up, they are rel­a­tively easy to ac­cept and say thank you. Then there are deeper ap­pre­ci­a­tions that in­volve your char­ac­ter and in­ner qual­i­ties. How would you re­spond if some­one spoke di­rectly from their heart,

“You have so much love com­ing through you.”

“Your wis­dom has re­ally changed my life.”

“I feel up­lifted just be­ing in your pres­ence.”

“There is so much light com­ing from your eyes.”

“You are a true healer and I feel so much bet­ter.” How would you hon­estly re­spond? There are many peo­ple who feel un­com­fort­able and do not re­ally know how to re­spond to these types of ap­pre­ci­a­tions. Some peo­ple would de­flect the ap­pre­ci­a­tion and say some­thing like, “Oh you too.” They would then quickly change the sub­ject. Some peo­ple would ig­nore the com­ment al­to­gether but think to them­selves, “If you re­ally knew me, you would not be say­ing such a thing.” My beloved fa­ther would al­ways smile and say, “Non­sense!” I knew that he liked the ap­pre­ci­a­tion, but he just couldn’t let on that he did. One day I wrote out all my ap­pre­ci­a­tions and sent them to him. Weeks went by and I did not hear back. Fi­nally I called and asked if he re­ceived them. All he said was “Yes”. Years later, a week af­ter he had passed away, I found the let­ter hid­den un­der his shirts in the drawer. The pa­per was worn out from be­ing looked at so much. He truly did trea­sure those ap­pre­ci­a­tions and yet it was so dif­fi­cult to let me know.

When Barry and I were 22 we got mar­ried dur­ing his break from Me­harry Med­i­cal School in Nashville, Ten­nessee. This was an African/amer­i­can school in the 60s when civil rights was a huge is­sue. It was dif­fi­cult for him to be in the white mi­nor­ity. On his first day back to school, Barry came to me with a look of vul­ner­a­bil­ity and need for my love. His vul­ner­a­bil­ity al­lowed me to see the great­ness of his be­ing and all that he was meant to be in this world. With all the love in my heart I sim­ply said, “Barry I feel in awe of who you are.” He be­came em­bar­rassed and said, “I’m not sure you should say some­thing like that.” For­tu­nately Barry has since learned to re­ally take in com­pli­ments.

Why is it hard to re­ceive an ap­pre­ci­a­tion? None of us wants to be like the per­son who takes in the ap­pre­ci­a­tion and then acts as if they are

Why is it hard to re­ceive an ap­pre­ci­a­tion? None of us wants to be like the per­son who takes in the ap­pre­ci­a­tion and then acts as if they are the great­est hu­man on the planet.

the great­est hu­man on the planet. We’ve all met peo­ple who have a very big ego and who feel they are more spe­cial than any­one else. Peo­ple like that can be un­pleas­ant to be around. Most of us don’t want to feel su­pe­rior to oth­ers.

I per­son­ally strug­gled with this is­sue very in­tently in my early years. I was al­ways striv­ing for hu­mil­ity and I equated ac­cept­ing ap­pre­ci­a­tion with a lack of it. Forty years ago, when we were first start­ing to give work­shops, a woman walked up and gave me such a gen­uine ap­pre­ci­a­tion. It felt so good to hear her words and yet, after­wards, I ex­cused my­self and went into the bath­room and started to cry. I felt lost and just didn’t know how to han­dle the ap­pre­ci­a­tions that were com­ing my way.

Right at this time a great bless­ing came into our lives in the form of a woman named Pearl. She was in her 70s with permed grey hair and a bit of a lisp in her speech. By all ap­pear­ances she was just a lit­tle old lady who lived in a lit­tle neigh­bour­hood house with flow­ers. But Pearl could see us in the deep­est way. She could see the heart’s de­sire and had the abil­ity to guide us along our path so that we could be of ser­vice from the heart. When­ever she saw one of us go­ing up to our heads to fig­ure some­thing out, she would re­mind us to come back down to our hearts. She once told Barry and me that we would never be able to help peo­ple un­less we could see and ex­pe­ri­ence them from our hearts. Her teach­ings were good and pure and we will al­ways feel grate­ful for our time with her. She did not have a large fol­low­ing; just some peo­ple who would come and sit in her liv­ing room and lis­ten. I no­ticed that peo­ple of­ten gave Pearl very deep ap­pre­ci­a­tions. She would just smile in won­der at their words and say, “Thank you.” She re­mained hum­ble and pure. One day I asked her how she re­ceives ap­pre­ci­a­tions so grace­fully, and her sim­ple re­ply helped to change my life. “I am al­ways sur­prised and de­lighted at how God will come through me to help an­other. I never re­ally know my­self and when some­one tells me, then it is such a bless­ing that all I can say is thank you.” She was not sit­ting there think­ing, “Oh my, I am such a spe­cial per­son.” She was merely de­lighted that the Great Pres­ence of Love was com­ing through her to bless an­other. She never took credit for any of it.

Next time some­one ap­pre­ci­ates you, lis­ten deeply to their words. Then thank them and feel the won­der that the higher en­er­gies were able to come through you to bless this per­son. Feel a sense of awe that or­di­nary hu­man be­ings can be used to bless and help oth­ers. When we see it this way, all we can re­ally feel is grate­ful.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.