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6-Week Gratitude Challenge

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EXTRA THANKFUL

Thank you for being part of our gratitude journey as we close out the challenging year of 2020 and pave a new path into 2021.

Week 1 - Thank You Messages

Through the COVID-19 pandemic we've seen the best in many people, as they've shown compassion and empathy and offered to help others during this extraordinary time. 

Action:  Send a thank you note to someone, or many, who have helped, supported, or encouraged you this year. 

Research has shown, a simple and meaningful note can have a huge impact on its recipients:

Below is my own note to kick us off.

Dear Waldron colleagues:

You amaze me everyday in your resilience throughout these last several months. How you both take care of yourself and others, both personally and professionally, is inspiring. This collective modeling of self-care, of putting on your own air mask before assisting others, supports us all in continuing this practice to stay healthy and productive...together. It is a constant reminder I am regularly grateful for, along with being able to call you all teammates. Thank you!

Yours,

~Ben

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Week 2 - A Gratitude Board

Similar to keeping a gratitude journal, try capturing what you are grateful for in pictures. This gives you the opportunity to visualize your gratitude.

Action:  Collect pictures of the things you are grateful for and create a visual collage/board. 

Try taking pictures of things you are grateful for every day, week, or month. Notice how you feel as you capture, collect, and view them. They don't have to be grandiose things to be grateful for. A simple picture of even the sky will do.

You may notice, the more you do this the easier it gets to spot things you are grateful for and to appreciate the simple yet meaningful things in life. 

By documenting multiple pictures throughout the year, you can collect them together to create a collage to both appreciate and share.

From the Waldron team, we have created a collective collage and included statements of gratitude to go with them:

 

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Week 3 - The Gratitude Quiz

Similar to keeping a gratitude journal, try capturing what you are grateful for in pictures. This gives you the opportunity to visualize your gratitude.

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Action:  Take the Gratitude Quiz (Link) 


Waldron Managing Director, Client Engagement, Blake Harris on his gratitude discovery this year:

Given everything going on with the COVID-19 pandemic, it afforded me gratitude in being able to have the time to be with family, especially with my newborn son Hutsen and the health challenges he experienced as a premature baby. Being able to spend nearly the entire first year of his life at home with him has been an extremely rewarding and fulfilling experience. This gift of time would not have been afforded me, beyond ordinary paternity leave, had we not been forced to work from home during this global crisis.

The concept of appreciating the value of time reminds me of a podcast interview I heard featuring Cleveland Cavaliers basketball star, Kevin Love. He was conveying this one idea that was meaningful to him of buying back time. Time is something we readily think of as a finite resource of 24 hours in a day, and once that’s gone, it’s gone. Within this, we understand we have only as long as our unknown lifespan. We are born one day; we will die one day. Appreciable time is not infinite. However, Kevin took a different angle on that. He said, “I want to be able to manipulate time so that I can get it back.” Obviously, that sounds like some kind of superhero power. However, he was saying that if there are things that he can spend money on and have someone else can do it for him, it allows him to do things he deems more important, such as spending time with family or pursuing some higher use of his time and energy. Thus, he is able to buy back or manipulate time. 

I found this to be an eye-opening thought for me. Whether we have limited resources or not. In this year of getting more personal time back due to the coronavirus pandemic, I am now assessing, going forward, where there are opportunities to get more time back in my life, so I can spend more of it with things which are most important to me, especially with family.

- Blake

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Week 4 - Personal Reflection

Unprecedented is a term we've heard a number of times to reflect the times we find ourselves in. It is maybe one too flattering to give to 2020, as this _____ year does not usually bring up the feelings of amusement or novelty which can be associated with unprecedented. Yet, there is no better time than the end of the year to explore just what it has all meant to you, along with, hopefully, the silver lining you might be truly grateful for. 

Action:  Take time to reflect in writing how the year, month, week, and/or day has impacted you—taking particular note of the things you are grateful for in your life. 

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Reflection serves to help us evaluate our experiences and learn from them—ideally, improving our future likelihood of being more purpose-driven, effective, and successful. Though this is common knowledge, many of us struggle to carve out time in our fast-paced lives to reflect properly. 

Benefits of Self-Reflection:

    • Better relationships
    • Greater sense of self
    • Stronger decision-making skills
    • Learning what to repeat in your successes
    • Learning what to avoid in your defeats

Questions to Reflect Upon:

    • What did you love?
    • What would you leave out?
    • What will you add or improve?
    • How did I grow?
    • What was the single biggest challenge I overcame?
    • Who needs to be acknowledged in my life with gratitude?
    • What were my most memorable moments?
    • What was the best thing I learned?
    • What was I most grateful for?
    • What was the single biggest time waster this year?
    • Name the year, 2020. 2020 the year of...

Try that last one with the challenge of turning it into something of gratitude or positivity! Leave us a comment, if you would like to share your positive turn on the unprecedented year. ;-)

Here, our President & CEO, Mike Humphries, shares his reflection for us on closing 2020 and turning the page to 2021:

As we approach this season of the year and reflect on 2020, it’s been a year that has required infinite patience, humble fortitude in our endeavors, personal and collective courage, enormous empathy and compassion, and a significant dose of resilience; we feel and find strength in gratitude.

We are grateful for our many blessings, especially this year; the love and friendship of those close to us are top of the list. In this challenging year, keeping connected with family, friends and community has been one of the keys to finding a little joy in each day.

We are grateful for our continued health and well-being. We are thankful to those in our communities who continue to serve others, our doctors, nurses and caregivers, postal and other government workers, sincere and caring public servants, non-profits, volunteers, and all those who work in jobs that put them in harm's way every day so all may benefit, when we can mostly work from our homes.

We wish you all a year-end 2020 where you're able to experience the joy and reflection this season typically offers, noting your blessings and sharing in gratitude.

Here's to a better 2021, a more peaceful world where governments serve all their people, where basic needs, healthcare, education, employment opportunity, and social justice are experienced more equally, and where we can again pursue life, liberty and happiness freely.

- Mike

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Week 5 - The Value of Service to Others

At Waldron we regularly dedicate time and service to our local and international communities in commitment to social good. Beyond providing staff with paid time off to volunteer, Waldron routinely supports organizations in the areas of health, science, education, economic empowerment, and poverty alleviation. 

Service to others is obviously very important in providing support to communities and, fortunately, within our human nature. In helping others you also benefit yourself. Studies indicate that the very act of giving back to the community boosts your happiness, health, and sense of well-being.

Action:  Consider how the service of others has impacted you this year, and make a plan to give of your service.

Our impactful work at Waldron is made possible by our partner coaches and consultants all across our service regions. They have the front line responsibility and honor of serving our individual clients' needs, empowering them to climb high and realize their dreams and goals. It is our belief that our coaches' services change many lives, with inspired clients carrying on the work to in turn serve others. 

In this season of gratitude, Waldron coaches and consultants reflect on their feelings of gratitude for the partnerships they've forged with clients this year. Service to others is rich in value in giving and in receiving gratitude. 

 

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Week 6 - Reflection and The Future

As this 2020 comes to a close, we can all probably agree it's been one we will remember and tell stories about for years to come. It's important as we reflect on this year, that we reconcile the journey we're been on in order to truly achieve a deep level of gratitude for all that has come our way.

The following reflective exercise, from our COO Kim Bohr, is a great way to reconcile your 2020 professional journey and prepare yourself for a hopeful 2021.

Action:  Step 1: Pause, Write & Reflect

Answer this question: Where has my 2020 professional journey taken me?

  • Set a 5-minute timer.
  • Write without overthinking.
  • Include both positive and negative experiences.
  • Allow your list to take shape.
  • At the end of this initial timeframe, if you feel there is more to record, add an additional 5-mintues.

Action:  Step 2: What will you take forward into 2021?

As you reflect on the list you’ve created in step 1, take note of the following:

  • What isn’t serving me well? Cross of what you must let go of to get the results you say you want and deserve to have in 2021.
  • What will I carry forward into 2021? Circle those items you want to carry with you into 2021 as they will help you get the results you say you want and deserve to have.

Action:  Step 3: Designing Your Path Forward

With the work completed in steps 1 and 2, ask yourself the following:

Where Am I Going?

  • Set a 15-minute timer as a stating point.
  • Pull over the circled items from step 2.
  • Which of these items can you draw from to build your resiliency, empathy and gratitude?
  • What action will you take to apply what you’ve identified to the following?
    • Colleagues
    • Employees
    • Team
    • Family
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