“Gratitude is the sign of noble souls” – Aesop
When I got my “dream job” as an arranger at a jingle company in Chicago in 1979, I was mostly thrilled to be using my musical skills and in the studio practically every day. But I was also chagrined that after every recording session, there was rarely any feedback for the charts I’d written. I didn’t feel it was out-of-line to expect some small verbal acknowledgement that I’d done a good job, especially under pressure and last minute, so after the first few weeks of determining that the clients were genuinely happy, I privately asked the boss about it.
He looked at me like I was out of my mind, and as much as said to me, “what are you? a baby? you’re getting a paycheck – that should be acknowledgement enough!”
I felt shamed for having asked, but still a little defensive, and thought to myself, “what does it cost to let someone know that they’ve done a good job?”
Too often we humans take ourselves and one another for granted, and it doesn’t have to be that way. Four decades later, I’m still chewing on this, and sometimes when I can’t sleep, I silently reassure myself that I’m good – I deserve to breathe and live and exist. Because whether the boss will acknowledge it or not, I know that it’s true, and sometimes I just need to hear it. We all do.