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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Mahalo Grams

Some things absolutely warm your heart. I recently experienced this when an unexpected wave of gratitude came my way.

A wonderful spring tradition at my wife Kate's school is a Gratitude Day in the spirit of Aloha. One of the day's activities is giving Mahalo Grams (notes of thanks and appreciation) to classmates, teachers, family members, and others. I was the fortunate recipient of a handful of Mahalo Grams this year. That experience really made my day.

I have spent the past year taking the 8th Grade through the Lifeplan program. The first Lifeplan exercise is to identify your top three values. The students then keep a journal of the choices they face each day and the values they use as criteria to make decisions. When they come together each week, they share many of their choices and decisions.

Some of the most frequent values the students expressed included family, love, living your dreams, dedication, and gratitude. So it didn't surprise me that my dozen or so Mahalo Grams came from those students who listed gratitude as one of their top values. Let me share a few of their comments:

"Thank you for teaching me how to be successful when life is good and not so good. I have learned that every action makes a change. Thank you for opening my eyes to Life."

"Thank you for allowing me to experience the Lifeplan Journey. I have learned a lot about myself through recognizing my values and looking into the future. Lifeplan really is a phenomenal adventure and I would like to thank you for making it part of my life."

"Your Lifeplan class has truly inspired and motivated me to follow my dream. You and Kate are inspirational role models. I am going to miss you both so much."

It's so gratifying to see the growth these extraordinary young people have demonstrated in living by their values, and to see that they "got" the Lifeplan experience. As we all go off to enjoy summer's adventures, I'm already looking forward to meeting next year's group of young people who will share in the Lifeplan Journey.


All the best,


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