A Tool for Reinventing yourself & Pursuing your Passion: The 2nd of the 5 C’s of Acknowledgment, “Choice”

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Judith W. Umlas

Aging Well /

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I CHOSE to reinvent myself and to pursue my passion when I felt I needed to change a condition in the world: the lack of acknowledgment I saw all around me. I hope you, too, will reinvent yourself and pursue your passion! When it comes to letting people know their true value to you and how much they mean to you, you always have a choice.

If you are following this series, you are becoming more “conscious” or aware of the countless opportunities there are to let people know how important they are to you – family, friends, co-workers, even bosses! Now you are seeing the ways people matter, from your waitress, to your spouse, to your colleague.

I had the opportunity to acknowledge a TSA agent at LaGuardia Airport, who told me I had the wrong boarding pass (and he was right – it was some else’s)! When I panicked, he calmly and kindly suggested I get a new pass, promising to let me into the line with plenty of time to catch my flight. When I got the new pass and took advantage of his offer, he smiled and said this pass was definitely mine. After I got through the security process, I stood there and wondered: He was “just” doing his job, wasn’t he? Should I really acknowledge him? But he done it with kindness, humor and spirit. I “chose” to acknowledge him by leaving a note for his boss saying how safe, secure and pleased the agent had made me feel.

Soon after, I got an email back from the boss, saying that in his long history at that airport, he had rarely gotten a note of praise for an agent. He told me he planned to hold him up as a model of how to deal with the public, at a meeting of all of the agents. I was delighted! Soon after that, I received an email from the agent himself: “I am walking on air,” he said, and told me how thrilled he had been as a result of my note.

All that, because of a simple choice I made! A choice to acknowledge! So choose “yes” whenever you can. You will make a difference in at least one life, and perhaps in many.

Here are two real life and dramatic examples of how a positive Choice to acknowledge someone made a huge difference! WARNING: Have a box of tissues nearby as you watch these. You will need them.

  1. How an acknowledgment saved a life:
  2. Walter’s Story – an IIL Acknowledgment Impact Movie (AIM):

Stay tuned for the 3rd C: Courage. We all need it!



Categories: Aging Well, Reinvention
About The Author
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Judith W. Umlas is Sr. Vice President and trainer at International Institute for Learning, Inc. She is the author of the ground-breaking book, The Power of Acknowledgment  and two other books which have been credited with changing workplaces and lives.

Judith delivers inspiring, motivational and transformational keynote addresses, course and webinars on Grateful Leadership and The Power of Acknowledgment all over the world. Grateful Leadership and The Power of Acknowledgment are Judith’s passion, mission and her purpose!

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