by Estelle Fisher
Have you ever noticed how gratitude is circular? You give it, sincerely, and it comes back, amplified.
Every month, I have the privilege of giving gratitude, standing before our community at a Networking Event, and publicly acknowledging LA-CAMFT’s deep appreciation to our sponsors, those whose indispensible support maintains and grows our superb LA-CAMFT programming and community-building, I express gratitude on behalf of our entire community.
But the circle thing wasn’t always so apparent to me. Don’t get me wrong. I am glad to be the one to carry out this essential role as sponsorship chair, to recruit sponsors into our community and let them know how highly valued they are. But I’ve got to be honest; the public speaking part of it was not my favorite thing to do. Research has found that the fear of public speaking, for many, is even greater than the fear of death. Though I did experience a wave of anxiety every time just before taking the mic, it wasn’t as bad as that. And for the sake of LA-CAMFT, I found a way to do what must be done, and tried to do it as graciously as possible.
This year the chemistry shifted. I have been visiting our sponsors prior to their event, strengthening the connection between our communities, and deepening my own appreciation of who they are and what they do. A sponsor is now a place I have visited, people I have gotten to know. I am enriched for broadening my awareness of the diverse and profound work that is happening in Los Angeles. And I believe our sponsors feel more at home in our community for having been known.
So lately when I stand up to express gratitude to our sponsor on behalf of the LA-CAMFT community, a flow of deep, heartfelt gratitude comes through me. I am introducing a new friend. The words come sincerely and (almost) effortlessly, they travel around the room, stir people’s hearts, and come back in amplified energy that is palpable to everyone in the room.
Gratitude generates a tide of good feeling. See for yourself at the next Networking Event.