How to Practice the Art of Appreciation: A Practical Tip

How to Practice the Art of Appreciation: A Practical Tip April 16, 2013

During my missions effort equipping ministry leaders in Guam, it’s my privilege to feature this guest post from my good friend and mentor Richard Savidge, President of Ministry Coaching International. I first encountered him through this post from Michael Hyatt. Check out his weekly blog here, his awesome coaching and retreat adventures (Savidge Adventures), and follow him on Twitter andFacebook.

When was the last time that you encountered a person whose life seemed to exude joy?

Their countenance was joyful.

The lilt in their voice was joyful.

The gleam in their eye was joyful — and, maybe, even a bit mischievous.

Did you ask them about the source of their joy?

Often we miss that opportunity to learn from the joyful soul that is next to us. When we do ask the question and look for the lesson, we often discover a person who takes nothing for granted but in everything gives thanks.

What It Means to Appreciate

As I have reflected on the art of appreciation I have started to see that truly appreciative people take nothing for granted. People that take nothing for granted start to see wonder in the mundane. They start to see that even the hot water that flows from the spigot is a luxury and a delight. They see that the air they breathe is a gift they are given. They say thank you.

At some point in the journey of learning the art of appreciation, we start to understand that the lack of appreciation robs us of joy and kills relationship. When one is not appreciated, one is taken for granted. It hurts to be taken for granted! Our lack of appreciation is the very essence of taking someone or something for granted.

The great sadness is that we often take those for granted whom we love the most. That unfortunate fact is especially true of my relationship with God and with my family.

Practical Tip to Practice Appreciation

To counter-act this tendency, I have started the 10/3 experiment.

At 10am & 3pm each day, I put “TWH,” Time With Him, into my calendar. I also program my watch (Vibralite) to vibrate. This serves as my reminder to stop and reflect on the last 5 hours.

I review what has happened to that point and how God has been uniquely present. I jot a few notes, and I say thank you. Then before I go to bed, I review my day, I check in with Him, and I say thank you.

I believe that practicing the art of appreciation has amped my joy, transformed my relationships, and given me a greater reason to get out of bed.

Why not join me in the 10/3 experiment as we journey together in this great adventure?

What do you think of this practical tip to help us practice the art of appreciation? What other ways have you found helpful to cultivate appreciation in your own faith walk? Leave a comment below to help us all grow.

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