People are just as wonderful as sunsets if you let them be. When I look at a sunset, I don’t find myself saying, “Soften the orange a bit on the right hand corner.” I don’t try to control a sunset. I watch with awe as it unfolds.
The Appreciation Project is… a project. Or, actually, a movement to create lives that are more fulfilling, joyful and founded in strong bonds with oneself, loved ones and the planet.
That is, we believe that it is possible to see the world, our experiences, ourselves and each other with kinder eyes, with an attitude of curiosity, enjoyment and openness. And that by doing that, we may lead healthier, more grounded, fresher lives.
When we appreciate something, there is no need to fix anything, there are no ‘buts’ nor ‘what ifs’. There is just a deep contentment for how whatever is happing is presenting itself, unfolding at that moment in our lives. Like Carl Rogers observation about looking at another being as a sunset, we can all cultivate the idea of looking at people as work of arts – and all the unique colors and textures they bring to the world and to our lives (beyond judgment of whether they are “negative” or “positive” to us).
Appreciation is a practice and, as such, needs to be included in our daily routines: in our conversations with our work colleagues, in our gaze towards our children, or our loved ones, in how we open or finish relevant meetings, in how we present ourselves as we dive into conflicts or disagreements. It is nearly always possible to find in another – or in a situation – something that is to be recognized, admired or acknowledged, if only we stop to see.
So, it is through practices, daily habits, social circles, personal reflections, in person retreats and listening to others on how they practice appreciation in their lives that we build and strengthen our appreciation muscles.
The Appreciation Project is your own training field, where you can get in touch with the foundations and practice of appreciation, where you share your appreciative experiences and – hopefully, where you can contribute towards the building of a more loving, connected and appreciative world.