The final gathering at the John C Campbell Folk School is Student Recognition, sometimes called Show & Share, or Happy Clappy. All the classes that took part during the session show the end results of what they learned. Here you see the table for my class. We had enough space for each student to show two to three pieces. The lower right hand corner is the group project we created during the week. AMAZING work considering everyone was a beginner and had little or not experience with calligraphy, layout or design.

Never under estimate the power of recognition. Receiving praise, accolades and good old fashioned excitement from someone else about what you created has a remarkable impact. It helps solidify the value of the time spent learning, trying, failing, and trying again. It helps us know that time spent on growing our selves does matter. And it lets others see that if these students can do it others can do it as well.

All too often we forget that people need to be told specifically what they did well, how their work matters, and what improvement we can see in their efforts. If nothing we do is ever recognized then how do we know to keep going, to keep working, to stay on the path until the job is done? Yes the work itself is enough reward, how much sweeter that message is when it is accompanied by kindness, praise and smiles.

Who in your world could use a little ‘happy clappy today? How might their enthusiasm and energy level change if you took a few moments to tell them how what they did matters to the big picture? How does it make you feel when someone praises your work? Try a little happy clappy in your life today. A little goes a long way!