We are excited to be sharing this day with so many of our wonderful friends! Go check out these blogs for more pics, to see what others have done with their Gracious block and maybe even make a new friend!
Gracious: [grey-shuh s] adjective 1. pleasantly kind, benevolent, and courteous. 2. characterized by good taste, comfort, ease, or luxury 3. indulgent or beneficent in a pleasantly condescending way, especially to inferiors. 4. merciful or compassionate:
When we think of the word Gracious, the images that often come to mind is usually something like this. A woman, usually in a pearl necklace, warmly welcoming a visitor into her home or a gentlemen in a three piece suit standing with a smile as someone enters a room. What is it about these images or ones like it that bring graciousness to mind?
Graciousness is a beautiful blend of kindness, consideration and attentiveness. It enriches any interaction and gives our day the rosy glow of warmth that comes from knowing someone cares. The gracious person is warm, welcoming, empathetic and lives by the golden rule - Do unto others as you would have others do to you.
Jim Martin who wrote an article titled, Ten Characteristics of a Gracious Person, has a checklist for us all to consider.
- A gracious person is slow to take credit and quick to lavish praise.
- A gracious person never seeks to embarrass another.
- A gracious person is always thanking others.
- A gracious person doesn't monopolize the conversation.
- A gracious person doesn't try to play "one up-manship."
- A gracious person pays attention to people.
- A gracious person desires to say what is appropriate.
- A gracious person looks out for the comfort of others.
- A gracious person understands that she is not indispensable.
- A gracious person constantly points out the good that he sees.
Graciousness in friendship is invaluable. Don't we all want a friend who embodies all of those checklist items? How much deeper can our friendships grow if both parties strive to become more gracious?
How are we doing with our graciousness? As creatives it is common to show our love and care by giving them something we have made with our own hands. And while it is all well and good to take a gift over to your friend who is having a bad day, the gracious friend gives of her time and attention too. Actions such as eye contact, a hug or thoughtful words in addition to the gift can make all the difference in how that person's day may be changed.
Graciousness isn't limited to one on one interactions or lengthy visits. Think of a friend who is just one of many guests attending a party and isn't planning on eating due to dietary issues. As the friend wanders in search of the drinks they pass by the food and notice that many of the offerings cater not only to their strict diet but also include a few favorites. Although the host was not able to offer more than a quick hello to the friend, he/she feels comfortable and happy to be thought of and planned for.
May we all work to live more graciously and to be more grateful to the gracious people who touch our lives and warm our hearts.