Back in my primary school days, we had copy-writing as a part of our daily homework. Each day we would be assigned to write about a page of copy-writing in English and Kannada (the local language). The next day our class teachers would check whether we had completed the previous day’s homework.
Somewhere in between, a new system of evaluation was introduced. Instead of merely checking the completion of our copy-writing assignments, our teachers started using “stamps” to grade our work. There were a set of three stamps given to each teacher. One had a single star, another two stars, and the other three stars. Each day on evaluation, our copies would be stamped with either of these stars.
I remember the joy that we felt on being given a “star”. I would especially wait for those stars on my homework and would feel elated on getting three stars on some days. It was such a lovely way to appreciate our homework. Appreciate. Yes, that’s the word.
Let me take you back to your childhood days. When you first started using crayons and pencils, I’m sure you attempted in making a card or a drawing for your parents. That wobbly handwriting and drawing filled your parents’ hearts with joy, for sure. My mother has still preserved the cards I made her as a small child and she cherishes them with the same affection she did back then.
We do not criticise the efforts a child puts in. But what happens when the person is not a child anymore? How often do we see or hear people genuinely appreciating the work done by others? Appreciation is a simple way to tell people that you value their work and their efforts are noticed. As simple as that. Yet, we find it so hard to say a kind word or two.
At some point in our personal as well as professional lives, we have to deal with “constructive criticism.” Constructive feedback is great, as it helps us in improving our skills and craft. Sadly, what I’ve begun to notice is that people find it easier to pass a rude remark on someone’s work without even thinking for a split second.
It’s the age where each and every one of us is trying our best to be and do all that we can to achieve our goals. Lot of content creators are emerging and putting in their hard work. If you read the comments section of a lot of YouTube videos, you can find harsh remarks on the video. It is always easy to criticise someone. But the repercussions of the seemingly insignificant words does more harm than good.
When a person puts out their work for the whole world to see, it is not just the final product that you see that matters. One also needs to acknowledge the efforts and time invested by that person in creating their work. Everyone is just doing the best they can with whatever resources they have at their disposal. Rather than finding what isn’t good enough, take a moment to look at what’s good in their work and acknowledge it.
This applies not just to others, but to ourselves too. Instead of thinking that whatever you’re doing isn’t perfect or up to your expectations, mentally pat your own back at those minuscule accomplishments.
Often, it is the tiny acts of appreciation that matter the most. Always value effort, and the people in your life.
Until next time, stay blessed. Stay safe and healthy.
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