Tuesday, 10 January 2012


“Gratitude is the sign of noble souls” – Aesop
January 11th is International Thank You Day. It is the day when we should all make special efforts to thank those that deserve our gratitude. While most of us mechanically and subconsciously mouth the words “thank you” more or less regularly in our everyday interactions, the purpose of today is to get us to think actively and deliberately about the act of giving heartfelt thanks to those around us that especially deserve our appreciation.

Ingratitude is one of the basest qualities of a human being. If you show kindness to someone and help them, non-appreciation of this aid and benevolence rankles. Some ungrateful people add injury to insult by not only not appreciating kindness, but repaying it with malevolence, spite and offence. A wise person appreciates the good things that occur in their life, recognise their benefactors and are grateful to them. We should actively express our appreciation and gratitude by some return of kindness, not only to the people who have helped us, but to everyone around us. Having such an attitude certainly makes the world a better place.

Looking around us, our family should be the first recipient of our thanks. We often take for granted all the things that those closest to us do for us every day. Stopping and thinking about it and saying “thanks”, giving a hug and doing something unexpected for them drives home the point that we love them and appreciate them. You get appreciation by giving it. When you are kind and grateful to others, they are kind and grateful back. By saying thank you we acknowledge how much we value all those things that we are given as a token of love towards us and we reaffirm our love back.

Our friends are those that deserve our gratitude next, as it they whom we have chosen to bring close to us, and it they who have chosen us to be close to them. We accept their friendship, their esteem, their rapport and support, their sympathy and affection in our every interaction with them, why not acknowledge it by thanking them consciously and intentionally?

Our colleagues, our acquaintances our associates are also deserving of our thanks today. It is they perhaps who are the recipients of the most mechanical and casual of thanks under normal circumstances. Simple politesse can erode the true meaning of a word of appreciation. “Thanks” can be uttered as a verbal reflex or muttered under one’s breath; it can mark annoyance, and how often is it said ironically or even sarcastically? Considering our interactions with those people that are most peripheral to us can alert us to the little things that they do to make our life easier, better, more pleasant. For this we should thank them.

And perhaps even more so today, we should spend a little time to be grateful to a kindness that may be shown to us by a complete stranger. Rather than rush by, stop, look at the person and thank them heartily. Wish them a good day, and show them appreciation for their little kindness. We humans are social animals and most of us are basically good. We can make the world a better place by exteriorising as much as possible that goodness within us.

And lastly, you, reader of this blog I thank for reading it and allowing me to share my thoughts with you!


  1. Thank you for the great thoughts that inspire us to keep blogging.
    When questions come to our heads "Why will I keep blogging? Nobody reads... nobody asks us... it is useless... blahblah blah."
    Remembering of you makes me want to do another post, just another one...

  2. I'd not heard of this, so Thank you for telling. I shall make every effort.

  3. Oh, great post! I still have time today to get my thanks in, and thank-you! : )

  4. My thanks to you, Nicholas, for your insightful, amusing, touching, beautiful, thoughtful, creative, funny, melancholy, musical, artistic, though-provoking, sensitive posts! Always a pleasure to come here and read your blog, although I have been away for a while now! Looking forward to coming here regularly again.