My dog Marley taught me 8 great lessons in her amazing life. Today I am honouring her by sharing what she taught me.
What if we could live our days as authentic people, real and true to ourselves and our loved ones? How would our lives be different if we could be patient and trust that everything is exactly as it should be? How much more efficient would our lives be if we were obedient to the rules that have been established for the safety of ourselves and others? What kind of family or work environment could we create if we gave one hundred percent of ourselves in service, and received from others what they have to offer us? How can we be more loyal to the hand that feeds us? What kind of love could we experience if we placed no conditions on people?
Valentine’s Day is a day to remember those who touch our hearts, and those who help shape us to be who we are. Marley made my world a better place and I bless the time we shared and the lessons you taught me – just by being YOU.
Read my latest article, a tribute to my loyal golden retriever. www.PennyTremblay.com
A year ago I was told by a manager in human resources of a large organization, that she had to ask an employee to remove a sign on their cubicle or office that said “Merry Christmas” because it offended someone else in the office.
“How sad that people can’t celebrate in their chosen traditional fashion” I thought to myself.
I have been thinking about this for a year, and I am making a conscious decision to include Christ in my seasonal greetings. Yes, I am taking a stand for what I believe in, and I am allowing myself to speak, to think, to celebrate in my traditional way.
Christmas, December 25th is the birth day of Jesus Christ, a man who changed the world. I celebrate Him, and I will not be silenced by political views, policies in the workplace or others who have different beliefs.
You see, I understand that others celebrate differently. Different religious cultures name their Gods differently, and celebrate differently, and I think that is terrific too. Who am I to say what is right, or THE way, or the ONLY way. I can respect other people’s beliefs, even though they are not mine.
I also respect my own beliefs and traditions, and I will not be silenced or change my traditional greeting of Merry Christmas to Happy Holidays. My Christian values guide me to stay true to who I am, and share my joy with others by greeting them a Merry Christmas before or on this day.
So too will I wish my Jewish friends a happy Hanukkah this year during their eight-day commemoration which begins on December 20th and ends December 28th this year.
We can wish our African American friends a joyful Kwanzaa, during a weeklong celebration of their heritage and culture from Dec. 26 to January 1st.
As these and other faiths celebrate during this time, it is not only a Christmas season in our diverse country, but other holidays too, thus, Happy Holidays and Seasons Greetings are generic greetings that recognize all groups of people that celebrate differently during this season.
Rather than try and silence people from offering the greetings of their choices, can we not stay true to who we really are by celebrating our own greetings and messages, and find peace in accepting what others believe as well?
I will hang a MERRY CHRISTMAS poster in my office this year, and I encourage all faiths to celebrate and hang their message too. Won’t it help us all accept diversity when we can allow people to be who they really are, and be educated in the true meaning of what their holidays represent to them?
I personally have experienced the give and grow rich principal many times and it has nothing to do with chasing the almighty dollar. Its an attitude and an awareness about gratitude and love.
One thing that my Dad taught our family about abundance is very basic: Give with a heart of gratitude and you will be showered in blessings. No matter how difficult the customer or how small the amount he profited, he always treated everyone the same. My father was a farmer who struggled during the era where there was no insurance for his crops when family farms were totally dependent on the weather. After 3 years of loss, he sold the farm and started a family business. This was a transportation business where he built long and lasting relationships. One of his methods of giving back was to plant a huge garden, which he loved because he could still enjoy growing food while providing for his family. My Mother could never figure out why “he planted enough food to feed all of huron county”. He had two large gardens where he spent his spare time (many hours) tending to vegetables and he even grew cantelope and watermelons. We knew he gave away produce to the neighbours but we didn’t know how much he gave, until he passed away. At his wake, many people appeared and we had no idea who they were. There were families that came in gratitude and told us that they loved our Dad because of his generosity and he basically kept their family from starving. We were told many stories of how my Dad had made up care packages of fresh produce, packages of meat (as he never lost his love of raising livestock) and distributed them to low income families in the war time housing on the base. He often would leave the food on their doorstep and the family knew it was from “Earl”. Needless to say, when the priest spoke of my father’s genuine love and generosity, there wasn’t a dry eye in the church. My father was not interested in wealth, he only wanted to provide a loving and secure home for his family and to enjoy his hobbies. His whole approach to give and grow rich was being rich in the love from his family and friends and knowing that some of his small acts of human kindness would make a difference in other peoples lives. When I return home to visit my family, I often drive around the neighbourhood on the old air-force base and think of my Father and the families who’s loads were a little lighter due to these wonderful acts of human kindness. My Dad was the epitome of “give and grow rich”.
There were 13 patients, and their families assembled in preparation for ‘Family Day’, a monthly event scheduled for parents, siblings and spouses to visit their loved ones who had found the need and begun their journey toward recovery of their illness. “Before we begin, we would like to thank one of our parents here today, for the generous donation that she gave to our program”. I was handed a greeting card. Later that day, I opened their thank you card, inside were 13 scribed mini-paragraphs of appreciation and gratitude, from each and every person in the program, thanking me for making possible, the purchase of a new PlayStation2 for their lounge, a place where new intakes to their program spend all of their waking hours. Supplies and items to occupy their time are purchased with money that they raise or from donations received. “We are touched and grateful for your generous and thoughtful contribution to the welfare of our community”, “Thank you, we are all very excited! “, “Thank you so much for your generosity and kindness”, “From the bottom of my heart I want to thank you, not just for the donation, but also for being such an inspiration. More people should be like you, a true heart with genuine care and compassion. Thank you for restoring my faith in mankind”. These are some of the mini-paragraphs I received and read inside their card.
With sincere gratitude to the North Bay Warriors of Hope, our local breast cancer survivors dragon boat racing team, I was able to channel funds to an important cause, and change 13 lives today, and many more in the future.
We all possess the ability to reach out and give to others. Whether its money, material items, words of encouragement, a greeting card, a smile, a prayer or a compliment, giving to others gives us such a great sense of joy. No amount of money kept to oneself can buy this feeling of making a contribution.
What can you give? Who’s life can you make a difference in? Will you make a difference today?
By reaching out and offering something to someone, you may or may not receive thirteen thank yous, but I promise that you will be blessed with an internal sense of joy that no amount of money can buy.
I challenge you to sit down right now and make a list of several people that you would like to show love and appreciation to within the next week. This could be done by saying Thanks, or writing an email or text, sending a business thank you card, making a phone call, sending a gift, giving money or whatever makes you feel good.
When we practice the art of appreciation and gratitude and admiration to people, we are making deposits into our relationship bank account with them. And we feel good.
It doesn’t take a great deal of time or money to do this activity of gratitude, but the results are instant in the way it will make you feel.
Women In Business, North Bay luncheon presentation opportunity gives members 10 minutes to present their business to the group. This year, I decided to give it back — in recognition of all the members who have supported and helped me. I specifically mentioned several ladies and their contributions to my success, thanking many for referrals and support of my programs. I also recognized the whole club concept, the executive and the members who attend. The result … I did not have to promote myself, my service or my products. I accomplished this silently, but felt fantastic about verbally appreciating everyone. Appreciation definately wins over self promtion. Make it a part of your day – everyday!
Top 3 motivators from employee perspective:
According to a recent management study, 46% of employees leave a company because they feel unappreciated; 61% said their bosses did not place importance on them as people and 88% said that they do not receive acknowledgement for the work they do.Whether you are an entrepreneur, manager, parent, teacher, coach, friend or just want to be successful with people, you must master the art of appreciation.The top 3 motivators for employees are: appreciation, feeling ‘in’ on things and displaying an ‘understanding attitude’. That is what our employers want, our customers want and the people in our personal and family lives want.