Acknowledge, Align and Assure

A decade ago I was hired by Apple and I went to a week of training as part of my onboarding process. Everything I learned there was common sense, but in this particular professional context, it had application and structure. 

We did role-play, we practiced how to give and receive Feedback, and I learned about their Credo and the culture of Apple. What was most exciting was the fact that the enthusiasm, the openness and the culture of ongoing development didn’t subside after we started work in earnest. 

I fit with this company like a snug and comfortable glove. And I believed in their integrity while I matched it with passion.

And I practiced with dedication everything they taught me. Including the “triple A” approach – Acknowledge, Align and Assure – in sales, in tech support sessions and in training others. I also practiced this outside work. Even or especially when people don’t know of this strategy, it works wonders. 

I just remembered the guidelines of this wisdom last night, as I instinctively used it with my daughter. 

She expressed her intense emotions about wanting to see her sister. A little sister we’ve been talking about two years but none of us has met in person yet. We haven’t even seen a picture of her.

Jackie was sad. She missed her. But without diminishing her ache, we shared our own ache with her, expressing our hope and strong desire to see her little sister too. Our youngest daughter. 

We assured Jackie we will do everything in our power to protect her sister, to pursue her adoption and bring her home as soon as God sees fit. And God’s timing is perfect, even when we don’t understand it. 

We were visiting our upstairs neighbors, and Jackie was having a grand ol’ time playing with the boys, then she randomly announced as a matter of fact, with confidence and serenity: “today is my sister’s birthday”. Then she went back to playing. She processed and filed this emotion for now.

I had regretted briefly that I mentioned Evelyn’s birthday to Jackie the previous day. I don’t know why I did it. Maybe it’s because I keep her in the loop with the news and updates of this second adoption. And I mostly follow my instinct. 

This aching milestone has passed. But God’s timing is perfect. A year and a half ago I had this dream Did it foretell of the wait and the pain of holding on, and then the ease of the embrace? Maybe…

“The darkness is passing. The true light is already shining”