Saturday, March 5, 2011


   Lets face it, everyone likes to be appreciated.  Whether it is friends, couples, parents and children, an encouragement of gratitude, even a "Thank You", certainly brightens up the day.  Some of us may not be used to it or even if we are, it certainly doesn't get heard or said enough.  Perhaps we don't quite know how.  Here are 10 great ideas that will get you started in the right direction.
  1. Say it with a Smile- Smile more!  We are endowed with a powerful and contagious gift.  Everyone can do it, and yet we tend not to do it enough.  Remind yourself.  The more often you smile, the brighter your thank-you becomes.
  2. Write a Note- For a moment, remember your middle school years.  What did half the classes do behind the teacher's back?  Write and pass notes, of course!  It was fun.  Write thank you notes even for the small things that people do.  Be specific and authentic.  A thank you note is a very special way to show your gratitude.
  3. Give a Gift- To say thank you is a gift in itself.  Whatever your purpose, make the gift an interesting one.  Is a major holiday coming up?  Maybe you can wrap the gift in a holiday related fashion, or put it in a cute gift bag.  You can make the gift a funny one.  Go for it!  The gift doesn't necessarily have to be flamboyant, just make it something meaningful, something from your heart.  Even a thank you card can last a lifetime.
  4. Recognize Publicly- Whether you smile, write a note, or give a gift, you can do it in two major ways.  The first is to recognize someone in front of others.  Special celebrations such as a graduation or birthday party, are great times for public recognition.  You can thank someone for playing a part in your own achievements.  If you ever happen to write a book, the acknowledgements page is a great way to say thank you.  Even to say thank you in the presence of good friends is memorable.
  5. Appreciate Privately- Words of gratitude said in private can be very special.  A thank you in a small circle of close friends is a great way to show gratitude.  It is also a perfect way to express appreciation for one's spouse.  When you say thank you to those that are close to you, even when they are only acquaintances or co-workers, you begin to develop an attractive personality.  People appreciate  it when  someone can notice the small things they do.  It brings them a world of pleasure.
  6. With a Handshake- This is the general form of greeting in America.  You can also express gratitude with the same gesture.  You may accompany the handshake with a few words of encouragement or even a simple thank you.  Remember to smile, keep your posture, and shake hands like you mean it.
  7. With a Kiss- If you ever decide to visit France, you will find that the French are genial with their greetings.  A kiss in the moment of gratitude may be acceptable depending on the cultural context and circumstance of the event.  When it is between spouses in private, it can be a passionate kiss.  When done in a public setting, it may be quick and cheerful.  Depending on the setting and purpose, a kiss is a great way to say thank you, a moment one may be reluctant to ever forget.
  8. Give a Pat on the Back- A friendly gesture, it is great as a sign of support and is a perfect way to show gratitude.  When a job is well done, a pat on the back by someone in a "higher position" may very effectively portray one's gratitude.  Specifically coaches make it popular.  Whether it's a great play or a thank you for effort in class, a pat on the back is a great tool for showing thankfulness.
  9. With a Hug- Everyone at times need a hug.  The reasons for doing so can be endless, but a very meaningful reason would be to say thank you.  Depending on the situation, a hug can be a great way to say thank you.  The perfect moment offers perfect opportunities.
  10. Do Something Special- Get creative!  Think about what is meaningful to the person you want to thank.  What will make them smile as if they won the lottery?  Do they have specific hobbies or interests?  How can you make them feel special or appreciated?  For what do you want to thank them?  What will be your great idea?  As long as you express the message and the person understands it, you accomplished your goal.  Do the best you can and don't be afraid to experiment with multiple ways.  When you appreciate others, appreciation is bound to return to you.