WHICH is one of the most difficult words worldwide? POPCATEPETL, the Mexican mountain? Or, CHICHICASTENGO, a small town in Guatemala, or OUAGADOUGOU, the former capital of Upper Volta in Central Africa? Well, guess what.
"Somebody comes to my place and drinks a lot. I just keep on roaring and flowing and remain happy during my whole life, because I can give and share ... - even without any gratitude!" That engraved saying is from a historic fountain in Regensburg in Bavaria in Germany.
"Be in the making, means be thankful forever!" What a meaningful quotation from Goethe's drama "Faustus" (1831), but how very far away from today's reality. Let me ask you, my dear reader, "When did you say recently THANK YOU ?" In the supermarket to the cashier ... after a business meeting to your partners ... as a boss to your staff ... as a husband or wife to your partner ... etc. ... etc.!
Hold on, I don't mean it as a disgracing phrase, no. I mean it as an honest attitude to which we are all susceptible.
"The Pharisee stood apart by himself and prayed ... God, I thank you that I am not like the tax collector over there", (Luke 18,11). "What's more transient than gratitude?" asked the German poet, Friedrich Schiller (1759-1805) in his drama "Don Carlos".
Gratitude, or thankfulness, in our daily life and surroundings: many times it's just forgotten because we treat sacrifices of hard-working people, services, and even the smallest relief without saying it as only natural and take it as a matter of course. In times of Covid-19, many of us express again their gratitude to all frontliners. That's good and very important too.
Many of our earthly leaders forget that they got their positions because of our trust and votes. And how did they thank us? One of my former publishers from an international company with branches in Berlin, New York, and Amsterdam, told me one day: "Thank you for having your job well-done. It's a success for the whole company!"
I couldn't care less if the grumpy taxi driver isn't able to mention a simple 'Salamat' after I pay my fare including a small tip. But if children forget to express their gratitude to their parents, who keep on trying everything to guarantee a good education while struggling financially through life - yes, then it becomes painful and embarrassing.
Well, let's think about it again. Saying thank you helps building up bridges and connections - not ONLY in business life - and it is at least as important as praise and recognition.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or follow me on Facebook, Linkedin or Twitter or visit www.germanexpatinthephilippines.blogspot.com or www.klausdoringsclassicalmusic.blogspot.com
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