What exactly does thank you mean? Webster says it is “a polite expression of one’s gratitude”. While that may be true, thank you can mean much more.
After someone else makes statement, thank you means “I agree wholeheartedly.” This is especially true when the statement was pointing out the blatantly obvious.
Can I get an “Amen!”?
Thank you at the end of a statement means “It is not up for debate.” How many times have you heard something akin to this?
And I am not doing that again, thank you!”
“You are such a peach. Thank you.” Have you ever said this to someone who was irritating as a boil under the elastic of your underpants? (Raises hand. Asks for an “Amen!”.)
Generally, this thank you is followed by some expression of higher power. Whether you are thanking goodness, your God, powers that be, lucky stars or what have you, overall, you are satisfied with an outcome or happy about it.
Attitude of Gratitude
The simple thank you expresses gratitude, but not always as just a polite gesture. It is not the knee-jerk reaction to something, but instead heartfelt gratefulness. Here, thank you means:
- I appreciate what you did for me.
- You really did not have to do that, but I am glad you did.
- I recognize you did something for me without being asked.
- I am glad you did that for _________________.
- You have done something good I never expected.
- Your presence makes my day better.
- I appreciate you without you doing anything out of the ordinary.
Take a moment to think about who you thank, or have forgotten to thank.
- When was the last time you told someone thank you for something you expected them to do?
- Have you thanked someone for helping you without asking them to do it?
- Do you thank people for doing their jobs satisfactorily?
- Do you thank them for doing their best, even when unsuccessful?
- Have you thanked your mate for abiding your moodiness, pet peeves, bizarre behavior, socks on the floor or miserable table manners?
- Did you thank your parents for raising you?
- Have you thanked the last person who listened to you rant?
- When was the last time you thanked your children/grandchildren for minding?
- Did you thank the person who helped you do something even though it was an inconvenience for them?
- Have you thanked the last person you interrupted for stopping what they were doing/saying to handle your emergency?
- When did you last thank your prayer circle?
- Did you thank the last person who pointed out you were misbehaving?
- Do you thank yourself for doing the things you should?
Just one more thing.
What was one of the most memorable thank you‘s you have gotten? Have you thanked someone today?
(c) Ann Marie Dwyer 2011
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