I had been nagged by the thought of writing a thank you card to someone who had really done something nice for my wife and me. It was on my list of things to do and I finally remembered to buy some thank you cards. I was so happy when I came home from the store with this new box of thank you cards as if that were huge accomplishment by itself. I wrote my note, stamped it and felt great that I did what I knew should be done.
I then had another thought. I took four blank cards and stamped envelopes for each of them and decided that there must be someone else that I should be thanking for something. It did not take long before I had all four thank you cards filled out and enclosed in their stamped and addressed envelopes.
It felt great. It was like the second effort in a race or in a tight football game. When I forced myself to take the time to ponder my blessings the list of things and people for whom I am grateful extended way beyond the box of thank you cards. I suspect that the four people who get these second effort cards will be surprised to get them but that makes the thank you even better.
Try it with your family. This Christmas put several stamped thank you cards in their stocking. When they stare at you and the cards like deer in headlights explain that one of the best presents of the season is the feeling you get when you express true gratitude for the people in your life. They will understand it once they write and send them. There will be a lot of people who are touched in a positive way by these second effort thank you cards and it will include your children. I may need to go buy another box of cards!