The Power of Written Praise ⋆ Politicrossing
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The Power of Written Praise

Writing a letter of praise is a positive gesture, and, collectively, a building block to a healthy and sustainable society

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In this day in age, when it’s so easy to file a grievance or slam some group on social media, for balance alone, it’s ultra-important to write letters of praise when someone or some organization does an excellent job.

Yes, it’s quite noticeable when something goes wrong, but how often do we just skip over those things that go well?

The letter that you write and send, usually shared by those who receive it, does more good than you might presume. It is beneficial to you, to acknowledge those who have served you well. It is a reminder to you personally, that many vendors and service providers do an outstanding job and that too often we take this for granted.

Trending on PolitiCrossing.com: The Dead Do Tell Tales

Can I Give you a Lift?

Here are two examples of letters I’ve written over the years. The first, via mail, is 19 years old, before the widespread use of cell phones, and before Uber and Lyft:

May 6, 2002

Commissioner
Taxi and Limousine Commission
40 Rector Street
New York NY 10006

Dear Commissioner,

In my hour of need, New York City taxi driver Shahnur Talukder stepped up in a big way. Shahnur has only been in the U.S. for one year, hailing from Bangladesh with his wife and child.

When my pre-arranged van pick-up fail to arrive early yesterday morning as scheduled, I suddenly found myself without a ride to JFK airport and no one willing to accept payment by credit card. I had, perhaps unwisely, spent all of my cash the day before, but went to bed with my van reservation phoned in well in advance.

Following the van service letdown, I had no idea that New York taxis do not accept a credit card (as they do throughout North Carolina.) Six drivers out of six said “sorry.”

When I hailed Shahnur’s cab, his first action was to take me to a bank to see if I could get a cash advance on my credit card. I didn’t know the pin number, however, as I had not conducted such a transaction previously. The time was slipping away and my margin evaporating for getting to the airport on time.

Without prompting, Shahnur decided to drive me to the airport. He trusted me to mail him the fare (which I did, along with several gifts). New York has many heroes these days and, for me, Shahnur Talukderof is one of them.

Yours truly,
Jeff Davidson

cc: NY Times, Office of the Mayor, WSJ, Shahnur Talukderof

 

And Just Recently…

I wrote the following days ago and sent it via email. The performance of the equipment that I had left out in the rain so astounded me, that I knew I had to write to the manufacturer.

April 26, 2021

Product Manager
Olympus VN 7200
[email protected]

Dear Product Manager,

I wish to report a tremendous success story. By mistake, I left my pocket dictator, an Olympus VN 7200, on my porch and due to the strong wind, a torrential rain poured onto the pocket recorder for hours and knocked it off of the railing to the ground.

In the morning, I saw the pocket recorder and realized I had left it there. It was completely soaked. I felt a little disheartened; it was such a silly error to make.

I brought the recorder into my car as I was taking off and put it on the rug between the two front seats. In a matter of about 90 minutes most everything looked dried.

As a test case (and I held my breath), I turned it on, and flipped to a recording I had already made to see if it was retrievable. Not only was it retrievable, it played perfectly. I was amazed.

I’m writing in high praise of this product. Whoever designed it, whoever shipped it, and whoever sold it, should all be proud. Here is something that truly works, and works even when owners are careless!

Yours truly,
Jeff Davidson

 

Your Letter, Today

In this era of political divisiveness, entitlement, and downright acrimony between different groups, writing a letter of praise is a positive development, and, collectively, a building block to a healthy and sustainable society.

So, to whom will you write a glowing letter of praise today? Surely there are vendors and service providers in your life who merit such a letter. Remember, the benefits to you are as great as the benefits to the receiver.

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Jeff Davidson is the world's only holder of the title "The Work-Life Balance Expert®" as awarded by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He is the premier thought leader on work-life balance, integration, and harmony. Jeff speaks to organizations that seek to enhance their overall productivity by improving the effectiveness of their people. He is the author of Breathing Space, Simpler Living, Dial it Down, and Everyday Project Management. Visit www.BreathingSpace.com for more information on Jeff's keynote speeches and seminars, including: Managing the Pace with Grace® * Achieving Work-Life Balance™ * Managing Information and Communication Overload®



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Education

‘Anti-Racists’ are Racist: Do Not Apologize for Being White

‘Anti-racists’ claim that whites, by virtue of their skin color, are detrimental to society

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Ibram X. Kendri, the bigoted professor from Boston University and director of their Center for Antiracist Research, says that whiteness is a problem for all of society, indeed for the entire globe. Who knew?!

Kendri, who was included in Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2020, seemingly knows a lot about white people. In fact, he professes to know about every white person in America if not all over the world.

Me? I’m one of those people who merely gets up every day, brushes his teeth, gets dressed, eats a decent breakfast, and goes to work. I had no inkling that in the U.S. and other western nations white people like me had been “socialized to feel that they are inherently superior because they are white.” How naive I have been all these years!

Trending on PolitiCrossing.com: The Dead Do Tell Tales

Now I discover that to be “less white” is a virtue! It requires one to be “less oppressive, less arrogant, less certain, less defensive, less ignorant,” and, more humble, more willing to listen, more willing to believe, and, get this, “to break with the apathy” that white people like me exhibit and “to break with white solidarity.”

Woke Institutions and Brainwashed Authors

White solidarity? Darn, nobody told me about this. Thank goodness it’s all become so clear thanks to enlightened (white) authors such as Robin DiAngelo, who wrote the thoroughly racist and condescending book White Fragility, and thanks to companies such as Coca-Cola which have the foresight to impose programs for its white employees, to be less white.

When there’s a challenge in front of me, I actually do strive to find the right answer, particularly something related to numbers. I will collaborate on occasion, but most of the time I prefer to figure out things for myself, aided by the “all-knowing” Internet.

Am I arrogant, oppressive,  defensive, or ignorant? No one has ever brought this up. Being white, however, I guess I can’t help it! I don’t seek to inhibit the success of others, but I’m now informed that by virtue of my skin color I am detrimental to society. Mea culpa!

The Anti-Racist Racists

With Coca-Cola and other organizations teaching white people to be less white, I’m wondering, will the sequel be how Asians can be less yellow and Indians can be less brown? In America, both groups seem to excel academically. Perhaps only domineering Caucasians, particularly 60+ white males like me, however, are the ones upsetting the apple cart all over society.

Was I given a free pass for the last 40 years? I mean, all the while nobody mentioned my whiteness as a social and cultural problem. My black friends from Little League, high school, various hiking groups, and other groups around town haven’t said squat. So, up ’til now, presumably, I was doing okay. Perhaps they’ve merely been nice to me while whispering behind my back.

Heeding the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I thought our common goal was to live in harmony and to reach a state of color blindness where people were judged by the content of their character and not by their skin color. Hmmm…  I guess that is no longer in play.

I’m wondering, what would MLK conclude about today? Would he speak up against the propensity of the Left to define everybody else by class, sex, or race? Would he be opposed to pitting young against old, rich against poor, black against white, rural against urban, male against female, and all the other phony dichotomies that the Left relentlessly promulgates each day?

Absurd From the Get-Go

Imagine the unending uproar if someone drew up a list of how hundreds of millions of black people all over the world could become “less black.” The  absurdity of regarding all white people, hundreds of millions of them, as having a general set of characteristics, let alone having those characteristics be detrimental to society, is the grand facade of the ages.

How long will “woke” organizations maintain this illusion? Have they been coerced to the point where they’re afraid to say, “This is ridiculous, and needs to stop now”? [Actually, they have been coerced.] Will decades pass before we see the end of this malarkey?

I do not apologize for being a white person, just as no person of color has to apologize for their ethnic background, skin color, race, or religion. If you’re a good citizen who respects the rights of others, that, my friend, is sufficient.

Morgan Freeman, who played God in the movie Bruce Almighty, wishes we would do away with Black History month and merely have history. Freeman also wants us to stop regarding individuals as black and white and simply let people be people. Amen to that.

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Life

Finding Meaning in Daily Activities, Even Now

You are creating your life every day; every choice you make determines the quality of your life

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If you’re like me, each day you shudder to think what new, nation-destroying ploy, or blunder, the Biden administration will foist upon us next. In our own lives, nevertheless, while awaiting November 2022 and the chance to take back the Senate and House, we have the opportunity to find meaning nearly each day.

In her book, My Grandfather’s Blessings, Rachel Remen tells a story about a doctor who had to deliver a baby in the hallway of the emergency room area. He had delivered other babies but not like this. While swabbing the baby’s face, she opened her eyes and looked right at him: he was the first person she had ever seen.

This experience changed the doctor’s way of proceeding. He regarded this as sacred moment. He remembered why he chose this line of work. He felt validated. His cynicism fell away. He became more invigorated, more inspired, and started to interact with more of his patients and his co-workers. Soon, he was invited to events he had never participated in before. His whole world opened up.

Trending on PolitiCrossing.com: The Dead Do Tell Tales

Now, he seeks such moments constantly.

A Capacity that Builds

Finding meaning is a capacity that we build, like a muscle. When you first started in your current career position, finding meaning was not an issue. You were excited. There was so much you wanted to do. You had all kinds of plan. Then, years passed.

Little by little you became jaded perhaps. Why did I choose this line of work? Why can’t I find competent help? Why are customer or clients so demanding?

It is possible, even now in this time of turmoil, to reinvent yourself on the job, to rediscover what initially attracted you to this profession and what the current possibilities might be. Sometimes the re-awakening is triggered by attending a conference or convention, taking a course, reading a vital book, or spending time with a colleague or peer.

Goodbye to Yesterday

Today and the days that follow do not have to be extensions of what came before. You do not have to proceed into the future looking through a rear view mirror. A world of choices awaits, even if in the same old position you’ve been holding down for years.

Will you make new choices? And what will drive those choices?

Discovering or rediscovering meaning is about getting clear on what’s most important to you and aligning your choices with those priorities. It’s about living and working with intention instead of operating on autopilot or by default, where one day looks exactly like the next.

So, What Matters Right Now?

Start by identifying what’s most important to you …today, not what was important five, ten, or 20 years. Is it creativity, or perhaps collaboration? Maybe it’s impact or flexibility?

Next, identify what professional – and this might be different than your current profession! – and personal goals align with those priorities. What does living or working more creativity look like? If, say, collaboration matters to you, how can you incorporate more collaboration into the work you do?

From here, you’ll want to pinpoint actions or choices that support those goals. Where are your current choices in or out of alignment with what you’ve identified as most important? What new, more intentional choices can you make?

Each and Every Day

Consider this: You are creating your life every day. Every choice you make, action or inaction, determines the quality of your life. If not now, when: Making the choice to live and work with intention and in alignment is the key to cultivating a life of meaning and fulfillment.

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