Shortly before this past mother’s day, Landmark Forum leader David Cunningham appeared on the Daily Buzz television program to discuss the best ways to appreciate and honor one’s mother. The video and transcript of the interview are shown below.
Interviewer: Okay. The official celebration for mom is just two days away; do you know what yo’re going to get her this Mother’s Day? Well, our next guest says, “Flowers are nice. Candy, yeah, that’s all right. But that’s not what she really wants.” Landmark Education Communications Expert, David Cunningham is here to talk about what tops Mom’s wish list. Thank you so much David for coming in.
David Cunningham: Good Morning.
Interviewer: Okay, let’s do it. Flowers just don’t get the job done according to a recent survey out there. What does get the job done?
David Cunningham: Well, moms love the flowers and they love being taken out to dinner. What tehy really want is a special thanks. They just want our thanks. They like to know that they’ve got our appreciation, our gratitude, our respect.
Interviewer: A simple thanks, so I can call my mom and say, “Mom, I love you, thanks,” and that’s it.
David Cunningham: Well, that’s a beginning. There’s really – we found three things in all the thousands of moms that are in our Landmark Education programs around the world. We found three things they really want.
Interviewer: Okay. Say “thanks,” I guess, for a specific moment. Thank you for giving birth to me.
David Cunningham: Thank you for – if you look back over your life, you can relive some very special moments. There’ll be some special moments, simple things like maybe when your mom cheered you up when you were blue. Or she stood beside you when maybe it looked like nobody else was. If you can think back on even one of those specific moments and then relive it with her, she’ll love that.
Interviewer: Whey should you be so specific with that “thank you”?
David Cunningham: Because it really brings up the presence of it. It has the mom know that you remembered and that it was special because people like to know that they got to contribute to you.
Interviewer: Okay. Number two, do something just for her.
David Cunningham: That’s right. On Mother’s Day, there’s things that moms like to do. It doesn’t even matter if you like to do it. It could be as simple sometimes as sitting down and talking over coffee. It could be something more elaborate like planning a trip for her. The important part is that it’s something that she would like to do.
Interviewer: Let mom go to the beach alone and read a book.
David Cunningham: Exactly. That’s the one you’d like, right?
Interviewer: I think moms just want some “me” time, but you don’t want to say, “I just want some ‘me’ time on Mother’s Day.” People expect you to be with the kids.
David Cunningham: Yeah. It’s important to listen and know what your mom would like for her.
Interviewer: Okay. Number three, let mom know she’s getting the job done.
David Cunningham: That one may be the most important. For moms to know that your life works. To be able to say to your mom, “I’m okay. My life works.” I was talking to one young woman recently. She said that she used to fight with her mom a lot as a teenager. Now every time there’s a little bit of tension all she does is she looks her mom in the eye and says, “Mom, I’m okay, and my life works. I have a great life.” She says every time she does that it dissolves the tension and her mom gets tears in her eyes and there’s love right there.
Interviewer: That’s a perfect way to do it. David, thank you so much.