Anatomy Of A Thoughtful Person

by Nicki on January 12, 2009

in My Thoughts

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Have you ever had someone remember something about you that was so small, so insignificant, that it meant the world to you?

I think it’s a gift to be thoughtful by nature. Remembering things beyond what is required (birthdays, anniversaries, names) takes purposeful thought. I don’t have the gift of thoughtfulness, but I’d like to develop it. Being a motivated person, completing tasks in the most efficient way, I miss things sometimes. I get things done, but occasionally it’s at the cost of something more valuable. Sometimes, I just don’t notice things. It’s not because I don’t care; I care very much. My focus is just elsewhere.

There’s a joke between my husband and I. You’ll think it’s terrible, but I don’t usually notice when he changes his facial hair. If he starts growing a beard or if he shaves it off, I usually don’t notice for a while. I’d really like to do a little better than that. I’d like to be more thoughtful, pay more attention and notice the little things in life. While pondering this it led my thoughts to a more specific place. What exactly is it about a person that causes him/her to be thoughtful?

Thoughtful People Are Listeners. It is difficult to pick up on small details about people if you are doing most of the talking. I know this because I’m a talker. Every now and then though, when I make the conscious effort to be quiet and listen, I’m pleased to find I pick up more from my companion and absorb more from our conversation. 

Thoughtful People Are Observers. Thoughtful people take notice of others, paying purposeful attention to needs and even preferences. Rather than jumping in the spotlight they are watchful of the person in the spotlight.

Thoughtful People Are Not Self-Centered. When in a crowd, at a party or other public event are you overly concerned with how you appear to others; if your hair is right, your conversation interesting, etc.? Thoughtful people are more focused on others rather than themselves. Their care for others shows through in compassion and a lack of focus on self.

Thoughtful People Take Action.  While it is good to take notice of something, it is something else entirely to act on it. Thoughtful people step out and take meaningful action with the sole intention of meeting a need or blessing another person. 

Reading this over I’m afraid it sounds a little preachy. My dad will like that. Really, I’m preaching to myself a little and hoping a couple of you can identify. I want to improve my character and the person I’m becoming (well, I’m already a person, but hopefully I’m becoming a better one). I think it would do a world of good to have a few more thoughtful people in it.

How about you? Does thoughtfulness come easy to you or do you tend to miss things sometimes like me?

Why I do what I do ~ I love sweets; I mean really, really love them. I just ate the tastiest banana split … for SUPPER!

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Candy January 12, 2009 at 8:12 am

Just by reading your post, I think you are very thoughtful!
I do know what you mean when someone remembers something
so small it touches your heart.
You have a blessed day

Candy’s last blog post..Food for thought

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2 Andrea January 12, 2009 at 4:29 pm

Ahh, I have my moments. I think I often get wrapped up in the “stuff” of life and forget to take a breath and look around to see others. You know? I’m working on it though. Great post.

Andrea’s last blog post..Trials.

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3 Kate January 12, 2009 at 5:45 pm

I definately struggle with this. My coworker always knows the second I walk in the door whether or not I am having a bad day, but I always have a hard time catching on. I think you are right about taking a step back and being an observer. I really appreciate this post…it really makes me think about how I could be more thoughtful. Thanks!

Kate’s last blog post..Almost Lost Domestic Arts – Knitting

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4 Jason January 12, 2009 at 7:41 pm

I’m terrible when it comes to noticing things, either around the home or that my wife has done (changed hair, new nail polish, etc). I certainly don’t mean to miss these things – it’s just my brain is usually jumping around with a hundred different thoughts at once, and “the real world” gets ignored a bit as a result :-)

Jason’s last blog post..Do You Have The Best Bank Account?

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5 Super Mega Dad January 13, 2009 at 2:00 am

Great list!

I think you and my wife could be twins. I go weeks growing a beard and have a little internal game running in my head to see how long it takes her to notice. You would think the scratchy feeling on her face would tickle a little or something. :)

Then again, now that I think about it, maybe I need to try her method and just say something like “so, how does my new beard look”? But that wouldn’t be as fun in a month when I look like a mountain man and she finally notices that I have something growing on my face.

Super Mega Dad’s last blog post..Such a proud Super Mega Dad

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6 Zoeso February 24, 2009 at 7:48 pm

Thank you for this post. Sometimes I feel like my life moves at such a swift pace, but when someone does something thoughtful and unexpected, the seemingly small gesture is like running into a brick wall, but in the most positive sense!

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7 Michelle February 24, 2009 at 8:19 pm

Love the post. I actually just googled “don’t notice things” because it’s somehting that bothers me about myself.

Someone had just taken down a display at my work. In wanting to clean up the mess, I said, “what’s this?” They were like, “Uh, it’s the display that has been up for months that was just taken down a week ago.”

I do it all the time. I notice the mess and not the beauty. I think more about what needs to be done and feel like I don’t have time to “smell the roses” or even look at them. When I do look, I really don’t get the joy out of art or nature that I should. It’s a little frustrating. I’d really like to be more happily observant of things and more thoughfully observant people.

My husband is very observant of things going on around him as well as people and their needs. I guess together we make a pretty good team, but I’d like to make this weakness of mine a strength.

I love what you said about acting on your observations. I’d like to become that thoughtful person you describe. I’m printing it off to look at frequently. I think I need to focus more attention on my efforts every day and maybe even keep a mental or physical journal on my progress. I know prayer will help, too. Thanks for your thoughts.

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8 Christi {Jealous Hands} March 14, 2009 at 8:18 am

I’m pleased to find out that I’m a thoughtful person by nature! Thanks for sharing this post.

Christi {Jealous Hands}’s last blog post..y’all are just gonna have to indulge me…

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