We have a common emotional desire to be appreciated. Somehow, an expression of gratitude validates that our presence is valued and that we matter. It gives us an inner fulfillment of being able to do something that is pleasing to others. Appreciation inspires us to grow and do more.
Unfortunately, our efforts are not always recognized and many people feel that of the efforts they make, the very things that deserve appreciation are oftentimes the ones taken for granted. Thus, contrary to the uplifting effect of being appreciated, lack of appreciation can create a negative impact on people’s lives.
Whether we feel unappreciated at home, school, work or anywhere else, it can cause mental or emotional strain such as stress, anxiety and depression. It can also bring about feelings of unworthiness among other things which can deeply affect our choices and decisions in coping with life. Sadly, lack of appreciation can also greatly damage relationships.
We have heard stories of lovers parting ways, teenagers rebelling against their parents, friends drifting apart, employees leaving their jobs, and to the extent that some people even take their own lives. The most common reason besides the longing for love, attention and understanding is the lack of appreciation from others. How profound the negative effects can be when appreciation could be all that’s missing and the same tool which can be used to fix broken relationships.
There are many reasons though why a person may seem unappreciative. While some people are elated when others do favors for them, some are just less ecstatic about it. Hard to believe but there are persons who are simply ungrateful and feel that life and people owe them something. There are also those who find it difficult to express appreciation and are often misunderstood, while others take for granted what they have become accustomed to.
Whatever the reasons, we can’t deny the fact that somehow, at some point, we all hunger for appreciation. But in terms of appreciating others, we often fall short too. If we could only learn to be more appreciative of others, we can create a more supportive, emotionally uplifting environment.
Even small acts of gratitude can do wonders not only in lifting others’ spirits but also in changing mindsets, building trust in relationships, and in increasing a person’s effectiveness. Let us start by expressing gratitude for the most obvious efforts people make to please us. Let us not forget to give what we desire to receive from others as well.