Fred Rogers, in his acceptance speech for a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 1997 Emmy Awards, surprised the viewers by requesting that they spend 10 seconds in silence thinking about the people in their lives that have helped them become who they are today. He looks down at his watch and says, “I’ll watch the time.”
The camera pans to a thoughtful audience–some bow their heads and close their eyes.
He continues: “Whomever you’ve been thinking about; how pleased they must be to know the difference that you feel they’ve made.”
So, who are they? Spend ten seconds thinking about them. I’ll watch the time.
Now, Fred–excuse me–Mr. Rogers acknowledges in his speech that some who have shaped him are now in heaven. That may be the case for you. Spend a moment thanking God for their lives.
But many others may still be living. What if they received a note from you expressing your thanks? How would that change today for them?
Finally, who will we have contact with today? What would our interactions look like if we aspired to be one of the people that our coworkers, friends, family members, students would instantly think about if a Mr. Rogers asked them to spend ten seconds being grateful for those who have shaped them?
Have a great day, neighbor.