This happens to me a lot: I’ll come up with a wonderful way that I could help someone and I imagine how happy they will be when I’ve done it. I get a squishy feeling about it, and then I never do it, because I’ve already felt the benefits.

The problem is that having great ideas like this but never following through on them makes it look like we’re actually not thoughtful at all. But that’s not true. You are thoughtful. You just might need to work on your execution.

Look at it from the other angle. Do you know anyone that you would call thoughtful? Why is that? Do you know their thoughts? Can you tell when they’re thinking of you? Or is it something that they do for you – an action they take? I’m betting it’s the latter.

People can’t see our thoughts. They see our actions. If you can identify with this, I want you to stop believing that you are not thoughtful and realise where the problem might lie – in showing it. Frankly, this is true for a good number of other Things You Are too. What’s inside is impossible to see without external evidence or action on your part.

One way this shows up – besides the above – is that we convince ourselves that it really couldn’t be us that does it, but we really think ‘someone’ should do it. And hey, I know you can’t do everything, but I’m sure you’d know the difference between not doing something because you are overstretched, and not doing it because you don’t think you are the right kind of person.

So next time you think of something good that you could do for another person, try telling someone about it – and getting them to hold you to it. I think you’ll be pleased you did.