Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Recognize Her Excellence

You know, all of us crave recognition. It doesn’t matter who you are or what you’ve done, that craving is still there, even for people who have never put forth the extra effort to do something outstanding. There’s just something inside of us that wants others to recognize that we’re someone special.

Some of my most prized possessions are things I received as recognition for something I did, either in my years of engineering or my service in the army. Of them all, my favorite is a bus-driver’s jacket that was given to me by a customer, back when I was an engineer in the city bus manufacturing plant. I had needed to put forth some extraordinary effort to complete their order on time, and they gave me that jacket as a thank you. It’s old and grease stained now, but it’s still special to me.

What makes that jacket special isn’t that it was expensive or that it’s elegant, but what it represents. It represents someone taking the time to say, “You’re special; thank you.” It doesn’t matter what happens in my life, that jacket will always be special.

What does your wife do that’s outstanding? What do you appreciate her for? Is she the best tortilla maker you’ve ever met in your life? Or, does she have the most beautiful hair? Perhaps it’s that she is always cheerful, encouraging the rest of the family when you are down. Then again, it could be that she’s the best little-league mom in the west. Whatever it is, there’s something special about her; maybe several somethings that are special about her, the things that make her stand out from the crowd.

Okay, so now that we’ve established that your wife is deserving of recognition, who’s going to recognize her for it? If you think that her boss or the little league team are going to do it, think again. Why don’t you do it?

I know we always think it’s a little corny when our kids give us a “#1 Dad” coffee mug on Father’s Day, but don’t we appreciate it too? Well, it’s time you made your wife some sort of an award for being the best at what she’s the best at. I don’t mean just go out and buy her a “#1 Mom” coffee mug, I think you should personalize it a bit more than that. Make her a certificate, or better yet, get a trophy place to make her a plaque which extols her virtues in that area.

Present it to her at a formal ceremony with your family. You want to ham this up a bit, but not so much that it comes across as phony. She needs to see that you’re serious about what you’re saying on that award, not that you’re making fun of her. Let her know that her efforts aren’t in vain, that somebody sees them and appreciates her for them. Cheer her on.

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