Monday, May 13, 2019

Being Grateful is a Choice

Here's a beautiful story that I came across in the book 'The Trillon Dollar Coach'. The book is a tribute to Bill Campbell, who is widely regarded as the best coach Silicon Valley ever had. He coached the likes of Steve Jobs, Eric Schmidt, Larry Page and several other execs like former CEOs  of eBay and Twitter.

The story was about Apple spinning off the software division called Claris and offered Bill Campbell the position of CEO, which he duly accepted. Bill stayed the CEO till 1990 when Apple decided to bring Claris back in it's fold. Bill decided to leave Claris for other opportunity.

After hearing his decision to leave, several Claris employees came together and published this ad in San Jose Mercury News. In our careers, all of us probably have worked with good bosses and not-so-good ones. While the latter more often dominates our mind and gossip table discussions, how many times do we come forward and choose to return the dues to the good bosses. This example of Claris employees running an ad thanking Bill is first of a kind I have seen.

If we scratch the surface of this act of Claris employees, it becomes evident that they chose to be grateful for the value Bill added to their lives.

They could have simply chosen to send a thank you email and shook hands (like most of us would ha e done), but they chose to go an extra mile to express their gratitude much like Bill would have done while coaching them.
Look at the choice of their words
"You taught us how to stand on out own. You built us to last. And even though you're no longer coaching the team, we're going to do our best to keep making you proud."
This story lead me to search for the true meaning of being grateful. I found the expression of gratitude in this article beautiful, hence sharing

What does it mean to be grateful? Thankfully, it doesn’t mean convincing yourself of some bogus notion that everything’s fine and dandy. Living your life with gratitude means choosing to focus your time and attention on what you appreciate. The goal is not to block out difficulties, but to approach those difficulties from a different perspective. Appreciation softens us. It soothes our turbulent minds by connecting us with the wonderfully ordinary things, great and small, that we might otherwise take for granted.

In the end, we are sum total of choices we make. Choosing to be grateful is one of the finest things one could do to add value to one's own and the lives of others in touch.

Be mindful. Be grateful.

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