The Jackal is the nicest person in the world but he doesn’t know how to express it. His own judgments stop him from saying he is grateful. Sometimes, he thinks saying to someone he loves her or he appreciates what she did, poses a threat. For example, judgments like “she’s going to have power over me” can appear. But when he puts his giraffe’s heart on and express gratitude towards someone else, more often than not the relationship is strengthened.
Gratitude should be a daily sport for everyone, we have so many reasons to be grateful even in less than perfect situations. We tend to focus our attention on unmet needs and we forget that we have plenty of met needs (whether it is food, shelter, fresh air, love…). And yet, when those needs are unmet, we really long for them. Gratitude is good for the soul, for the relationship and the world.
Gratitude is not just saying “thank you”, it’s genuinely feeling it and expressing it in a way that allows the receiver to understand what he did to make your life more wonderful.
Imagine, it is Saturday night, you invited a friend to spend the evening with you. You are on your couch and you have been talking for hours. (No, the story does not lead to where you think...). You are having a deep connected conversation with your dear friend. It is 2 a.m, you are both tired. Before leaving, your friend tells you. “Thank you, I really enjoyed talking to you”. That is nice, you feel good about it. Now, imagine the same situation, you friend leaves and says: “I am so grateful we spent the evening together. You showed me that through NVC, we can connect with authenticity with one another. It was like a wake-up call for me. I am eager to try it out with my mum like you did.”
Which one would you rather hear?
I would prefer the second one, because I truly know what I did to help my friend. Without it, I would not even know that I helped her.