As a First-World nation, all our advanced technologies keep us too well-informed. We must deliberately turn off the news and not check our ever-present cell phones to hide from each day’s shooting incident, or political scandal, or hotly debated moral impasse. Depending on how close to home any of the above situations are, it can be hard to stay positive. Gratefully this week we get to share a traditional family holiday, or an annual Friendsgiving centered around a feast. And following that feast, what is the best exercise? What about counting our blessings?
I think I am competitive by nature. I work hard to keep my IT consulting and management company, Aptica, on the leading edge of my industry. Yes, I want your business and yes, I will keep asking for it. But this week, I enjoy thinking about other things that mean more to me. Like, omigosh it is so endearing and, for each successive year, historic to see all the family and friend faces around the table for the big meal. Having time off from work to listen to individual stories and to catch up with each other’s lives is a treat. Call me old-fashioned but my #1 Thanksgiving tradition is counting my blessings every year on the day that is supposed to be dedicated to gratitude.
The older I get, the more deeply I feel the value of stretching the gratitude for all blessings from just one day to several. I want to spend more time acknowledging and enjoying all that I have to be grateful for. This includes, reluctantly, all of the aggravation that comes with the highly specialized work that I’ve chosen as my profession. The battle against the constant threat of data theft keeps me hustling every day. Some days it is starting a restoration of company files for a client who had a breach, some days it is learning how to defend against the latest malware. Some days, some clients are frustrated because their technology is not working well. Some days, clients are frustrated because they can’t fix their own computers and they fear the cost of improvements. Some days I don’t have a clue why people I’ve worked with for years are out of sorts and uncommunicative. This week I acknowledge I can grateful for how such challenges push me to grow and be better at helping. Or better at explaining. Or better at accepting.
When you work in a service profession, you will see first-hand how hard it can be for people to ask for help. There are cost issues. There are trust issues. There is almost always a backstory, often several backstories. Every day there are business demands that range from supporting employees, connecting with current clients, and educating potential clients. All of this in addition to family, and community, and non-work-related personal goals—well, adulting can be exhausting. I am grateful for my mentors, my coaches, my peers in the MSP profession, and to several authors whose books have enriched my understanding as well.
Happy Thanksgiving, and happy holiday season. This year I think I will extend my gratitude all the way into the promise of another New Year. I hope you will also explore all you have to be grateful for. And as always, if you have technology questions or issues, give us a call at Aptica. We will appreciate the opportunity to help you in this highly specialized world. 260.243.5100.
Jason Newburg, 260.243.5100, ext 2101, is the founder and owner of Aptica LLC. This IT management and support company has been serving small to medium-sized businesses for 19 years in the region that includes Angola, South Bend, and Fort Wayne, IN, Battle Creek, MI, and Toledo OH.