Attitude of Gratitude Week 1

We have one more part to our 3 part succession series to which we will return. Since November is the month of Thanksgiving, we are going to take a little break and refocus our attention to the Attitude of Gratitude.

Author  Mark Batterson encourages his readers to journal about things they are thankful for. He calls it a Journal of Gratitude. Journaling has been a fairly consistent part of my life since my early 20’s so I took Mark’s advice and I began to journal about people and things that I am thankful for. During the month of November, I want to share with you three entries from my Journal of Gratitude.

Auburn University Professor Martial Honnell

Auburn University Professor Martial Honnell

In June of 1968 I began my college career at Auburn University. Studying electrical engineering (and ultimately graduating) was one of the most difficult things that I have ever done. There was nothing easy about it. There were many days when I wanted to drop out or change majors, but there was one professor who consistently encouraged me.

Professor M. A. Honnell taught me Circuits. He was an older professor who didn’t even have a PhD but his extensive and varied private sector experience, coupled with his common sense and gift of encouragement more than made up for that. From his perch by the blackboard in the front of the class, I am sure that Professor Honnell could see the look of confusion or discouragement in the eyes of several of his students. His aging, yet encouraging voice still echoes in my mind. I can still hear him when he would say,

“You fellas can do this! You are good engineers. You can compete with those guys from Georgia Tech. You can solve any engineering problem! Just wait ‘til you graduate. You’ll see!”

Most days I needed this encouragement. I needed someone who seemed to believe in me, even when I didn’t. I was privileged to have a lot of good instructors at Auburn but not many of them were as encouraging as Professor Honnell. Were it not for him, I’m not sure that I would have a degree in electrical engineering from Auburn.

Professor Honnell passed away 2 years ago at the ripe age of 101, but this day, I’m thankful for him. War Eagle!

What are you thankful for?

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Dr. Tommy Thomas Tommy Thomas is Lead Partner of JobFitMatters® as well as Board Member and Managing Director of parent entity SIMA® International. He specializes in cabinet-level retained executive search for nonprofit and faith-based organizations.