VOL. 126 | NO. 251 | Monday, December 26, 2011
Creating A Recognition Resolution
By Jeremy Park
Last week we focused on the recent public unveiling of the Memphis Police Department Fallen Officer Memorial, which honors the MPD officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty and the families and friends they leave behind. This week, as we start closing the book on 2011 and begin forming resolutions for 2012, let us consider a simple action that could have a profound impact on others around us and our community, as a whole.
Exactly one year ago, I wrote in this column that my 2011 resolution was to be more intentional in picking up trash. It included a personal goal of encouraging others to volunteer in the effort. When I look back now, honestly, I have to laugh because little did I know, at that time, we would bring in Chad Pregracke of Living Lands & Waters as a guest speaker with the Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club, and that we would team with the University of Memphis and Memphis City Beautiful Commission to help clean up McKeller Lake. Over the course of four cleanups, hundreds of volunteers came out and we were able to remove roughly 15,000 pounds of trash from McKeller Lake this year, which was a great success.
My 2012 resolution is to be more intentional with positive affirmation and recognizing daily efforts of family, friends and co-workers. Self-admitted, I move at light speed with way too many thoughts bouncing off each other to push limits. My goal has always been to take three positive steps each day, no matter what. While that can be an asset, it also can sidetrack me from taking time to “stop and smell the roses” – to notice successes of others around me, including those of my wife and children. So, my official 2012 resolution is to recognize and affirm the efforts of at least one person each day.
I share this resolution because I believe it can have a profound impact on our community. Described as the “butterfly effect,” we see it in commercials and countless storylines where one good deed sets in motion a wave of positive actions. Indeed, movements start with small actions, like simple praise. I cannot remember the person, but I remember his advice: if you want to set the tone for an amazing evening with your family, make sure to walk through the door with a smile on your face and the enthusiasm to immediately tell each one how much you love and appreciate them.
When we receive a compliment, the world seems brighter. So, imagine if each of us adopted a similar goal of daily recognition and said thanks, even to strangers. What a simple way to give back and yet have a remarkable impact on others! The impact it could then set in motion for our community is endless.
Jeremy Park, director of communications at Lipscomb Pitts Insurance and director of the Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.