Showing People They Matter
In a community that I’m apart of, I mentioned to one of the members of the community (we’ll call him Steve) that I’d sent a text to another member of the community (we’ll call him Dave). There wasn’t much to it. I basically just sent a text to Dave that said, “Are you coming tonight?” However, I was completely shocked by Steve’s reply to me saying I’d sent a text to Dave.
Steve asked me, “Dave is such an attention whore that he came out after you gave him some attention?”
I must admit that I was complete blown away by this comment and still am today. As I thought about it, I realized that Steve was right about Dave enjoying attention. However, that wasn’t the intention of my text at all. I just wanted this person to attend and so I sent the text to encourage their attendance. I’ll admit that I don’t even understand the thinking that someone wouldn’t do something as simple as sending a text because they didn’t want to give someone attention.
This idea really came together when I saw a TedXDesMoines video where Angela Maiers talks about the idea of showing people that “You Matter.” Watch even just the first 5 minutes to get the idea:
As I thought about my experience with Steve and Dave above, I realized that all my simple text did for Dave was say, “You Matter.” Plus, Steve wants to know he matters almost as much as Dave, but Dave is just more vocal about it. However, I wonder how many people avoid showing other people around them that they matter all because of some idea that they’re feeding someone’s need for attention. It makes me sick to think about.
Let’s be honest. We all have a need to know “You Matter.” Who doesn’t like to feel appreciate for something or wanted? We all do.
I think Angela Maiers is on to something with “You Matter.” There’s a real power to showing people that they matter to you. Time to look for more ways to show this quality in more aspects of my life. Even if it’s something as simple as a text message.