In the age of the iPhone, we're awful at delayed gratification. If you can't figure out how to tie a bowtie or cook that recipe - Google is at your fingertips with the answer, or at least the guidance. Our emails are constantly alerting us to pause our lives and respond. If we can pull ourselves away from our emails, our Twitter & Facebook notifications pull us right back in. Not to mention, with the divisiveness that our country we are often left exhausted and discouraged that we're all human and we all have hearts.
I still believe that. Despite the hate and turmoil that is going on, I believe that we're all human, and that a thank you goes a long way in reminding each other of that. I'm not alone either. Last week, at our monthly Karma Keg event at Vita Vite in downtown Raleigh, I had the pleasure of meeting Mimi Shankin, a local professional who is inspired by the idea of gratitude. Discouraged by the political rhetoric that she saw cluttering her social media feeds, Mimi decided to do something about it. She is offering Free Thank Yous and shared this with us at our Karma Keg.
Mimi showed up to the event with a purse full of ready-made thank you cards that were all blank inside. She had a variety of designs and a variety of cards by photography, Teresa Stephens. All of her envelopes were pre-stamped and she didn't care who you decided to write to, she just wanted you to express gratitude. Her hope was that she could begin to unite people as humans - to understand that we're all different and that we all have the right to (and often do) believe whatever we choose, but we're still human and that we should be thankful for all of the blessings that we have in each of our lives. Mimi impacted me more than she probably knows. The desire to unite us as people first runs deep within my veins. It is something that I was taught from a very early age, and something that I work very hard to instill in my step-kids. After thinking for a while about who I would write my thank you note to, I decided to write it to my parents. After all, they were the ones who taught me the original importance of giving thanks.
Life goes by fast. There are a million things that can distract us at any given moment, but when we stop for a moment, most of us are overwhelmed by one important feeling - gratitude. Taking the time to show the people in your life how important they are to you, to say thank you, and to take a moment to show that others matter - these things are what make me proud of humanity. These are the very same things that can drive you to lead an extremely successful business. This week, I want you to stop for a few minutes and take some time to write some handwritten thank you notes. If you're really ambitious, start the habit and take the time more often than just this week. I think you will be encouraged when you watch your business take off because you said two little words.