As AJ Jacobs drank a cup of delicious coffee, he mentioned how he was grateful to everybody who made it. His son bluntly pointed out how the people Jacobs was thanking weren’t actually hearing those words.
Jacobs realized that his son was right. So he went over to the coffee store to thank his barista. But then, he realized that he must also thank the designers of his coffee mug – the cardboard cup, its lid and its sleeve. Before he knew it, Jacobs was on a year-long expedition to thank everybody who made his cup of coffee possible – from miners in Minnesota who made the steel in his coffee grinder to coffee growers in Colombia. He wrote about this gratifying experience in his book, Thanks a Thousand.
When a friend gifts you some pottery, she gives you the hours it took for her to craft it. But she also gives you the thought and the effort that she poured into it. Further, she shares with you a part of her skill as a craftsperson – the number of hours that went into learning pottery and creating a thing of beauty that sits on your desk. We value personal gifts because along with the gift, somebody shares with us a part of themselves.
There is always more to be grateful for than what meets the eye.