26 NOVEMBER 2021





DO OUR PETITIONS OVERSHADOW OUR THANKSGIVING ?



As we look around the world today, we see a lot of dissatisfaction, discontentment and a craving for more. One of my key findings is that we are living in a world of instant gratification and quick remedies and hence tolerance levels are at its lowest. It also seems that patience is the most wanted virtue for anyone to possess right now.





The Great Resignation:

As we encounter one of the most challenging hurdles of current times – The Great Resignation, we find employees looking out for greener pastures with hope of doing something new, something different and something more purposeful in life. While these reasons could be true, there is also the added dimension of people trying to achieve the right balance between need and greed.


But sadly, we see that this new phenomenon of a thirst for new opportunities comes immediately after close encounters of our very own existence of survival, due to the pandemic. Many of us have rather quickly forgotten that not so long ago, it was a battle for survival and trying to make ends meet. In this short-lived memory crisis that we are in today, it is evident that we could tend to be focusing on what more we can have, rather than how much more thankful we can be for what we already have.


In my many years of dealing with salary review letters, I must confess that I can count on my fingers the number of times that any employee came back with at least a word of thanks. This again talks about the clear focus on what employees at work think, while they perform. They look at their jobs as professional services rendered and ensure commensurate salary is received for the same, with no extra emotions attached.


Request versus Order: It is also becoming very common these days to find lesser of requests and more of orders, not just at work but also in practical life examples. Be it dealing with delivery boys, waiters, counter sales personnel or even our domestic helpers. Some of us may be in a hurry and see it as a waste of time to 'request', while others may feel that it is not important to request people to get things done. Instead they take the shorter route by ordering people around.


Get versus Give: Being of help to society with community initiatives is so important. Garnering experience for ourselves is good but using it to accelerate the success of others is great. Post the pandemic, many of us are reminded to share with the lesser fortunate and encourage them to be uplifted in society. However, there are still pockets of selfishness seen when people want to hoard for tomorrow at the cost of many who could be helped when in need.


This similar situation can be witnessed in many workplaces as well, where colleagues would refrain from sharing their knowledge and experiences with the other only because they could be scared of being overtaken and being made redundant. It looks like the selfish bug has bitten many. I also get asked this question very often – “What do you get by sharing your experiences in public domain?” and most often people are shocked when they hear my answer. It is only then that my thoughts are further amplified that many around us want to receive and not give.


In Prayer: This is the most common area where we find where prayers for ‘Petitions’ outnumber the prayers for ‘Thanksgiving’. It seems that many of us remember God or search for divine intervention only when we are in trouble and in dire need, rather than give thanks for all the favours and graces that we have been abundantly blessed with. We take many things, including life for granted. To me, it is so hilarious when I witness fellow customers negotiating, debating and sometimes arguing with the sales representative on the life and longevity of the product, while they care less for their life. They take it for granted that they will outlive the life of the product.


I would like to close with tips from my experience in order to be more content, grateful and open to sharing:

1. Be grateful for our greatest gift of life by making the best of every day we breathe.

2. Accept all outcomes as great experiences, useful to us in one way or the other.

3. Learn to move on with setbacks through prayer, trust and perseverance.

4. Appreciate feedback from everyone just as we do for valuable gifts received.

5. Enjoy and celebrate over whatever we have and not stop the clock and wait for anticipated celebrations.

As we celebrate Thanksgiving, it’s time for us to open up our minds and think a little deeper as to what is my outlook – one of Petitions or one of Thanksgiving!