I’ve been through life-changing and life-disrupting events in recent years. What was always important to me has become even more important to me. Prior to entering the hospital just over a year ago for open heart surgery, I made a conscious decision to do everything in my power to be an unusual heart surgery patient for those who had to care for me.
While this was a brand new experience for me, I assumed that doctors, nurses and other care givers in the cardiac unit were probably not used to caring for people who said “Thank You” for everything that was done for them.
I did not always feel thankful as I laid there in pain after my chest had been cut open. However, I decided long before I was lying in a hospital bed in pain to thank everyone who was caring for me.
My thankful attitude had an amazing impact on my care givers. With only a couple of exceptions, I’m pretty sure that every care giver who entered my room appreciated being thanked no matter how small their effort towards me might have been.
Every time I have to go back to the hospital or back to a doctor’s office, I purposely decide before I arrive to be thankful to every person who provides care for me. Recently, I visited the hospital for another procedure. Everything that could have gone wrong went wrong.
I had one opportunity after another to blow my top and let my emotions get out of control. My care givers were not ready for me when I arrived at the scheduled time. The insurance company had not given my care givers proper authority to give me the care I went to the hospital to receive. My visit was a nightmare.
The one thing that made all the difference was my response to the situation. I chose to respond rather than reacting. As a result of smiling in the face of adversity and as a result of saying “Thank You” to everyone who crossed my path, I’m pretty sure that I set myself apart from most patients my care givers had run into that day before my arrival.
I turned the admittance person into my ally. She turned another admittance team member into my second ally for me. They turned the scheduling person not only into my ally but into my advocate. It took an extra 45 minutes to get to my scheduled procedure but I did get to the procedure as a result of smiling and being thankful rather than having to turn around to make a 45 minute drive home. Because of my response choices, everyone in the office that day went to work to solve my problem for me.
When the words “Thank” and “You” are used together, they can create powerful outcomes. I don’t think “Thank You” can be expressed too often for too many reasons.
If you’re not in the habit of thanking those who serve you or those who work for you, give it a try. You might be amazed by the results that come your way.