Accept and Reciprocate Appreciation
One of the simplest ways we can express gratitude is with a simple, “Thank you.” If someone holds the door for us, or perhaps waves us into traffic, saying thank you or offering a polite wave goes SO far with people. At the same time, when we reciprocate and pay that same hospitality forward to others, we’re making the world a better place for everyone. We’re all in a rush during the holidays and for some of us, it always seems that way, but when you take the time to slow down and truly appreciate and
reciprocate the little things, you’ll be amazed at how much happier your days and your life become.
Random Acts of Kindness
I’ve talked about this before but I’ll talk about it again because I genuinely do this EVERY SINGLE DAY. When was the last time that you bought a coffee for the person behind you or sent out a random gift to someone in your address book, better yet, someone you barely know? Perhaps someone is in need of a service that you can provide or a connection that you can make. Maybe an elderly person in your neighborhood needs a ride or that couple up the street that hasn’t had a night out since you’ve known them, could use a sitter. It doesn’t necessarily have to be monetary. It’s about doing something nice for someone without expecting anything in return. But I promise you, the more random acts of kindness that you bestow on others, the better a person you’ll become, and in turn, as will your life.
This would seem to go without saying but so often, people feel like they just simply don’t exist. They get lost in the social media algorithm, basing their worth on likes and shares or spend their birthday without wishes, wondering why no one cares. One of the first things I began doing when I finally made it out of my funk was simply acknowledging everyone that I could. I started with sending out birthday wishes on social media. I created simple graphics with someone’s photo. Then,I posted them to my social media page on their birthday and tagged them in it. 3 minutes of my time turned into a massive following of people saying “thank you,” and a chain effect of others beginning to do the same thing. To this day, one of the first things I do every morning is write down today’s Facebook birthdays and everyone who has one gets their own graphic and a special shout out from me…even people that I may not be close to. If they’re on my FB friends list, they get a birthday wish. Period. It’s so stupid
simple, but when you take the time to notice people and give them some flowers, even virtual ones, it’s a gamechanger for both of your lives.
Avoid Small Minds & Small Talk
It can be REALLY easy to get sucked into gossip funnels, especially in the digital world. One of the greatest ways that I express my gratitude these days is by avoiding those conversations at all costs. I’m truly grateful for everything in my life, all of people places and things, even the ones that i’ve had to let go. Why? Because some people are meant to stay in our lives forever and some are just meant to teach us lessons. Be grateful for both. By avoiding people who talk about others, you’re demonstrating a highly mature level of gratitude and respect, for yourself and for others. Even if you don’t particularly care for someone, if you’re approached and asked what you think of someone or a situation, unless it directly impacts you or those that you love, a polite, “ not my circus, not my monkeys” is a one-liner that you should
keep in your back pocket. Use it as necessary. If people are willing to gossip about someone else to you, they will gossip about you to someone else and there is ZERO to be grateful for in that.
Pay Compliments like they are going out of Style
Here’s another significantly small, yet grand gesture. How many compliments are you handing out each day? If we’re including social media, I can honestly attest to hundreds if not thousands that I do. Do you what it does for someone’s self-esteem when you say things like “Nice hair, nice shoes, nice smile, nice whatever,” or a give
someone a virtual high-five, congratulations or a “great job, friend!” It literally takes 2.5 seconds of your time. In the #Morning5 routine, we talk about sending
out those messages of encouragement to people. If you get into the routine of developing even ONE new habit today, get into that one. Encourage and uplift
others always and give them a reason to smile. Even if there isn’t something blatantly obvious, pass out compliments to friends, family, colleagues, and even strangers and spread them like wildfire.
Listen with your Heart and Not Just Your Ears
If you truly want to express gratitude to others, listening to hear rather than respond, is a great place to start. Especially during the holidays. If someone tells you that they need a friend or someone to talk to, our knee-jerk response is often to throw our 2 cents in the ring, right away at that. It goes much further with a person when we shut our mouths and listen with our hearts. Sometimes people just need to vent or to know that someone is there and willing to listen. Now, this doesn’t mean allowing
yourself or your generosity in listening to get taken advantage of. I’ll give someone my time and be a sounding board for their problem ONCE. I’ll listen with great intent and give them all of my undivided attention, but past that, we need to start working towards solutions, even if they are in micro-steps. That being said, just knowing that someone is in their corner can sometimes help people takes monumental strides and find something that THEY can be grateful for. Always listen more than you speak.
This is the most basic and simple of tasks on my to-do list every day, but sometimes, it can also be the hardest. I’m truly one of the nicest people that you’ll ever encounter and I mean that whole-heartedly. The person all of you follow on social media, is the same Michelle you’ll get in person. But I have crummy days too and on those days, my RBF can sometimes overshadow my glow. It happens. But generally speaking, I make a concerted effort to smile at everyone I meet in person and even when I’m making business calls or in meetings. People can hear your smile through the phone, believe it or not. If you want to close more deals, put a mirror on your desk when you’re making calls and a post-it note that reminds you to smile. I promise you, you’ll double down on the amount of sales you make. When I was an automotive GSM, that was one of my rules…my BDC and my sales consultants all had to have mirrors by their phones and I would go around every morning and leave encouraging post-it notes on them. The last sentence would always be, “Don’t Forget to Smile :)” – When I implemented that rule in the dealership, it made a world of difference in
the attitudes of my employees and radiated gratitude to our clients. Try it today.