A few weeks ago companies all over the United States celebrated some variation of Administrative Professionals Day. Just this past week on May 6th we celebrated National Teacher Appreciation Day (a personal favorite for obvious reasons) and National Nurse Appreciation Day. And, just this past Sunday we celebrated moms everywhere on Mother’s Day.
Whew, it’s been a jam packed couple of weeks focusing on appreciation and I LOVE it!
Hopefully you are lucky enough to work for a company/organization that celebrated all of the hard work you do. If you were in the position to celebrate your employees I hope that you did and let them know how much you appreciate what they do for your company/organization. If you’re a mom I hope you were celebrated and appreciated on your special day!
As a professor I am always humbled when my students let me know that they appreciate me; it’s nice to know that all of the hard work, dedication and energy I put into my lectures and assignments matter to them and enrich their lives.
The concept of showing appreciation is something I have been thinking about quite a bit lately. It all started when my friend and I had the honor of personally thanking a World War II veteran at the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. Talk about a humbling and amazing experience. My parents raised me to always show appreciation for our men and women in uniform and when my friend and I saw a World War II veteran we immediately knew that we had to thank him for all of his sacrifices.
As we each shook his hand (he had a firm grip—something I always admire in people) and thanked him for his service he responded with, “I love you girls. This is what it’s all about-you kids.” I got chills and started tearing up. It was something I will always remember and I am so glad that my friend and I took the opportunity to show our appreciation for that man.
It’s amazing to me just how far a simple “Thank you for what you do” or gesture can go when it comes showing appreciation for someone who works hard day in and day out for the benefits of those around them.
National Appreciation Days are a great start towards showing appreciation but why not do it more often? I believe that we should all seek to show appreciation to those who matter in our lives EVERY day, or if that’s too much for you at least one a week.
We become so used to having people let us know what we could do more of/do better/do less of but it’s rare that we are encouraged to show appreciation just because someone matters to us and I think that we should start doing that more.
My challenge to you is this: Let someone in your life know you appreciate them. Here’s a few easy ways to do that:
- Say, “Thank You!” Have a big smile on your face and look them in the eye.
- Give them a small token of appreciation. This doesn’t have to break the bank! As cheesy as those, “World’s Greatest —-” are they are a nice little gift to brighten someone’s day. Even a really fun balloon or small potted plant can mean a lot to someone.
- A handwritten note of appreciation. Let someone know that you appreciate them using the written word. A handwritten note can become a treasured keepsake for people in our lives and one day they may mean more than we could have ever imagined to someone.
Please show your appreciation for someone–it’ll make their day and yours!