Thankful for the Bad Times

“That which does not kill us, makes us stronger.”

-Friedrich Nietzsche

I don’t need to list the many challenges we’ve all faced, but the last couple years have been challenging times for many 8pm Warriors.

We’re not dead.

We’re getting stronger.

That’s something I’m thankful for today.

Thanks for a great year of connections, ideas, referrals, and friendship.

I am thankful for you tonight,

Aaron @Biebert

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Attribution Error and Why We Need Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving needs it’s own day because it’s a good thing that doesn’t come naturally.

It’s counter-intuitive, but the richer a country or person becomes, the less thankful they become as well.  Modern psychology backs me up on this.  A successful person often attributes their success to what they’ve done.

Human beings tend to take credit for good things and blame external factors for bad things.  That is part of the fundamental attribution error concept.

Even Abraham Lincoln recognized this in the beginning of his original Thanksgiving Proclamation:

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come…

– Thanksgiving Proclamation by Abraham Lincoln

We are forgetful.

Great leaders establish rituals that help remind people of what they ought to do and ingrain it into our culture.  The Thanksgiving holiday is no exception.

Take the reminder.  Shake off the cobwebs.  Remember where the good things in your life came from.

Then, say “Thank You“.

Have a meaningful Thanksgiving,

Aaron@Biebert

PS.  I am thankful for the 8pm Warrior community.  I have learned so much from you, your comments, and your friendship. Thank you!

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10 Different Ways to Say Thank You on Thanksgiving

Regardless of how hard the last year has been, there are still so many things to be thankful for.

Everyone thanks differently, but leaders must thank bigger and never leave doubt of their appreciation.  Take time to do it right.  It’s so important.

Here are 10 different ways to say thank you this Thanksgiving:

1. Walk up and say it

It can be as simple as walking up to a team member and telling them how thankful you are for them.  You can never say it enough.  If you are really thankful, don’t hesitate to say what chokes you up.  Be brave.  Be thankful. Be vocal.

2. Write a handwritten note

I hate writing handwritten notes, so if you ever get one from me you know I am thankful.  I doubt that I’m unique in that way.  In a computerized world, handwritten notes will stand out.

3. Record a video

If you’d like to thank one person (YouTube example) or a whole group (Facebook example), video is a personal way to say thank you when you can’t be with them in person.

4. Give your time

Giving someone your time is giving them nearly the ultimate gift.

Time is money.  Time is precious.  Say thank you by giving them your time and attention.  Share a bottle of wine, write them a Linkedin recommendation, help them move furniture, introduce them to someone who can help them, or just listen.

Whatever you do, make sure it isn’t distracted time.  Put the cell phones, text messages, or emails on hold.  Your attention will show how thankful you are.

5. Share their creation with the world

In a digital world, sharing is caring.  Thank someone who writes, records, or builds something by tweeting, sharing, or blogging about their creations.

6. Give a personal token of your appreciation

I hate gifts that are boring, thoughtless, or sterile.  Giving someone a considerate gift says you actually thought about them.  It says you are really thankful.

7. Blog about your thankfulness

Although it was general in nature, last Thanksgiving I wrote a “Thank You Notes” blog post and emailed it to the people I was thinking about when writing it.  It gave me a chance to demonstrate how strongly I felt, without making it into a public circus.  Not everyone is a fan of the limelight.

8. Make them something

If you have any particular skill at crafting nice things, don’t hesitate to bake, build, write, or paint them something as a thank you.  Just make sure it’s actually nice.

9. Share a meal

Take them out to lunch or dinner.  Breaking bread is a great bonding experience and a wonderful way to say thank you.  Some of my best memories are great meals or a bottle of good wine.

10. Pay it forward

The movie “Pay it Forward” was interesting and helped showcase what might be possible if people paid good deeds forward multiple times.  If you are thankful to someone you can’t contact, pay it forward.

 

In a changing world, there is little certainty for what the future holds.  What should leaders invest in?  Invest in relationships.

Say thank you.

Have a thankful night,

Aaron@Biebert

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Thank you notes

I’ve had all day and two separate Thanksgiving meals to think about what I’m thankful for in my career.  I thought I would share a couple of these thoughts with you.

  • Thank you to those who have helped form our new ideas.  You are some of the best and brightest people I know.
  • To all those who dared to try our new ideas, those who could see the vision before others could:  Thank you!  (It was visionaries like you who brought us the airplane, submarine, and spaceship)
  • I’m thankful for the lessons of life that make us better, more caring, stronger.  They’ve made us who we are, even though they hurt so much.
  • To those who choose to work with us, and allow us to pursue our dreams.  Thank you.  I will not forget your gift. 
  • To those who keep working, when the going gets tough.  Your strength inspires me.  Thank you.
  • To those who’ve said “Yes”, when it was easier to say “No”.  Thank you.  (It was your “Yes” that gives us a tomorrow and a future.)
  • Thank you to the friends who share our story with their friends and colleagues.  You are the sponsors of our tomorrow.

To my team members, friends and family:  Thank You for your support!

You mean the world to us.