It seems appropriate that my first post of the new year is in reference to something I started doing before the new year began. Beginning in the last couple days of December 2016, I started to think about what type of “resolution” I wanted to make.
Now I’m not much for resolutions because I think they imply a sort of dedication that “times out” after a certain amount of time. We all make them, and we all break (a lot of) them.
But I went through all the usual ones: to write more, to exercise more and eat healthier, to try to be more positive about things in life, etc. All of these are good things to do, but it occurred to me that they all are somewhat connected by the same thread: they all are mostly in reference to myself.
And thus, I began to think about two things:
- How I wanted to make a “resolution” that didn’t really feel like a typical New Year’s resolution
- I wanted to start doing something where I wasn’t the end subject
I subsequently started sending messages. A lot of messages.
Emails, Facebook messages, Twitter DM’s, and texts to people, thanking them for what I get out of my relationships. Not the networking connections or the business opportunities (there is a different time for that type of thanks), but simply the support that comes from friends and allies. Some out there may have already received one of these messages, and others are on the way.
It’s important to me to continue to do this indefinitely. Many times friends are taken for granted, even by the most thoughtful people in the most unintentional ways. It is a necessary effort to continue to acknowledge those relationships and the people who put in time and hard work to make them possible.
Messages of acknowledgment and thanks should not be a networking strategy or a marketing ploy. They may have business benefits, but that should not be the goal.
In the coming year, I will endeavor to make acknowledgment of the positive relationships in my life (professional and personal) of paramount importance.
Life is relationships.