Reflections in a Coffee Mug

Okay, I admit it. I like to be appreciated.

I have always prided myself on not needing “the approval of man”, and have relied on my own sense of self-worth and the belief that if I was doing what God called me to, then that should be enough.

But, I was betrayed. By a coffee mug, of all things. And not one of those mugs with a pithy saying on it, either.

Nope.  Just an ordinary mug decorated with an ” I Heart E-ZineArticles” logo.


The mug arrived in the mail last week, quite unexpectedly, with a note thanking me for my contributions to the online article directory. Now please understand, I contribute articles to this site in order to promote my business. I’ve never given much thought to what they get out of the deal and certainly never expected any thanks.

(Honestly, I think they only noticed me because of two recipes I published that have generated over 1600 hits in the last few weeks. And they are totally unrelated to the business. But I digress….)

But, here’s what surprised me. I didn’t need a new coffee mug. It’s not even very attractive. But something inside of me was beaming when I opened it.  Someone has read my articles and thinks they are worthwhile! And they want me to write more!

Never mind the fact that writing more was in my plan all along; suddenly, I felt compelled to churn out more words of wisdom and instruction just as quickly as I could. All because of a coffee mug.

If I truly didn’t need anyone’s approval or appreciation, then I wouldn’t have given that mug a second glance.

But I did. I’m not the same person I was 15 years ago…and perhaps I’m the last one to realize it. As I set forth on my new business venture, I’m surprising myself at how many fears I have to conquer that I never knew I had.

And I find myself needing a little pat on the back for each small step that I take. Again, not who I thought I was. But it is, apparently, who I am now. Or maybe I am just uncovering my authentic self, as Sarah Ban Breathnach calls it in her book Simple Abundance.

But, I would also venture to guess that I’m not the only one.  Maybe it’s just the strong, independent types who don’t like to admit that they need a little affirmation. Just about everyone performs better when their efforts are recognized and rewarded, whether they admit it or not.

I think those editors over at are onto something.

A little affirmation goes a long way.

Coffee, anyone?

3 thoughts on “Reflections in a Coffee Mug

  1. Sounds very familiar Lisa. On my counselor’s recommendation, I just took the Enneagram personality test (or whatever they call it) and the results surprised me. I can see roots going back to my childhood and I can see areas I’ve improved over the years. It was only $10 or $15 to take online. Quite worthwhile I think for anyone. Just search for Enneagram on a major search engine.

  2. I’m familiar with the Enneagram, and think a lot of it for understanding yourself and your significant relationships better. I pegged myself pretty easily from listening to a lecture series on it, as I saw my inner motivations and could see how I had changed ” numbers” as I moved from stressful to less stressful situations. Quite an eye-opening and helpful test!

  3. In the past few years I have found that my work has revealed many things about myself that I did not realize. Some good, some that made me stand back and shake my head and even some disturbing things. But I think knowing yourself better is always good, God certainly knows me better than I know myself and it seems to me that the better I know myself the easier time I have seeing myself as God see’s me.

    About the coffee… Lets look at our calendars and schedule a time.


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