Spreading the word[s]

Acknowledgement is a lovely thing. When I started blogging in 2008, the first post I sent out into the blogosphere was intended for my family, a way for me to share the moments of my expat life with those across the other side of the world.  But I got two comments – some kind words of support and encouragement – and suddenly a whole world opened up. 626 posts and nine years later I still wonder at you all – in a marvellously nice way that is. That you actually want to read my warblings on life is humbling and I am grateful for every time you visit and leave your mark whether it’s by following, liking, leaving a comment or just hanging out incognito.

Earlier this week I popped into Gidday from the UK ‘s back office to follow up on a few email notifications. I had a few comments to reply to and I wanted to return any post ‘likes’ by having a nosey around the latest posts of those very likers. Anyway, I got a lovely surprise. A nod from new Gidday-er, Rupali who blogs over at Full of Dreams, who had nominated me for a Unique Blogger Award.

UBA landscape

Acknowledgement never gets old (even after 626 posts) so Rupali, thank you.

Rupali’s blog is full of dreams – her dreams – and the masthead says it all…

“A single dream is more powerful than a thousand realities.”

Her posts capture moments and explore how the smallest things can change one’s day and make a difference. You can pop over, have a squiz and say gidday here

Rupali’s also asked me three questions…

  1. What is the best thing about writing that you love? It’s definitely the ability to relive a moment through writing about it.
  2. Name one of the blogs from your collection that you love and why? Memories of Nanjing because it captures a memory, a moment of unspoken acknowledgement in the most unexpected place. Even when I read it just now, I could still feel the thick warmth of the night air on the back of my neck and see the flowers appearing beneath her fingers.
  3. What do you prefer more, Reading or Writing? Oh dear, it’s reading. I’m a bit addicted…

Rupali finishes each post by admonishing us to ‘never lose that smile’. Well if you’ve been following Gidday from the UK for a while, you’ll know how I feel about creating moments of joy. So I’m sending this award on its way in the hopes of paying a little joy forward…

10 blogs that I love are:

  1. Chaotic Shapes
  2. Black.Bunched.Mass.Mom.
  3. Trash on the Monocacy
  4. Perking the Pansies
  5. Expat Edna
  6. lemanshots
  7. My One Beautiful Thing
  8. Pelky Sisters
  9. Are You Happy?
  10. Flirting with the Globe

Bloggers, your mission, should you choose to accept it (otherwise known as the rules for this award)…

  • Share the link of the blogger who has shown love to you by nominating you.
  • Answer my 3 questions:
    • What was your first ever blog post about? Don’t pretty it up peeps, mine was about turtles.
    • If you weren’t blogging/reading this blog right now, what would – or should – you be doing? The list is long…but probably eating.
    • Name one of the blogs from your collection that you love and why?  I am stealing this question from Rupali because it made me smile the most.
  • In the spirit of sharing smiles and moments of joy, nominate 8-13 bloggers for the same award.
  • And ask them 3 questions of your own.

Seriously peeps, acknowledgement is so good for the soul and we can all find a little time to give a nod to someone who brings something beautiful, thoughtful, joyful to our day.

So please share the bloggers that you love and keep spreading the word[s].

Tall Poppies: The Art of Acknowledgement

We all want to be noticed a little. A nod here, a pat on the back there. Recognised for our talents. Acknowledged for our achievements. So why is it so hard to ‘be’ with it all when this actually happens?

I have had the kind of week that these dreams of notability are made of. Compliments have been forthcoming from all sorts of directions in every area of life – my work, my writing, how I look, how I act. And don’t get me wrong – it’s really amazing to be in the midst of all of this.  But at the same time, if I’m honest, I find sitting in front of someone waxing lyrical about me, however genuine, uncomfortable. And I don’t think I’m alone in this. Trying to give others compliments is almost as difficult – not to give them per se but rather to see the recipient actually feel the ackowledgement and take in what you are saying about them.

Mum always taught me to be gracious when receiving compliments, saying that it takes courage to acknowledge something about someone else in a way that makes them stop and accept it. I try to live by this. But letting it actually sink in, moving me, delighting me, let alone repeating it to others seems vain and narcissistic.  And not at all in keeping with my laconic, self-effacing Aussie style. After all I am born of the culture that cultivates none other than The Tall Poppy Syndrome.

94c21-poppies

As children we do nothing BUT seek approval and recognition. It’s what defines us. But it’s also what we live in to – how we behave and interact shapes others’ opinions of and interactions with ourselves. So our individual worlds are increasingly shaped by what we are willing to acknowledge about ourselves as it is mirrored in other people.

So when does this self-appreciation society stop?  Is it when we feel that we disappoint others and don’t live up to expectations?  Perhaps when others don’t live up to our expectations and fall off the proverbial pedestal?  Is it knocked out of us by well-meaning grown ups who tell us it’s not ‘nice’ to brag, or to show off? Or maybe in the playground at school in our first games of one-up-man-ship, child to child (and absolutely no adults required).

Psychology somewhere probably has a multitude of answers for this and I don’t envy parents who navigate the maelstrom of opinions and advice available on the subject in an effort to raise healthy, happy, resilient children.

But on the other hand, maybe there are no answers. Just the human condition, the society that surrounds us and our best guess at charting our own watery depths.

So in light of all of this, I have decided to do my best to bask, from my position atop the pedestal, in this unexpected deluge of appreciation. I may even resort to a little exuberant wallowing in it…some joyful splashing about perhaps.

But just a little mind.

Apparently, no-one likes a show-off.