Three ways to ensure your gratitude is meaningful to others
Here in the U.S., Thanksgiving is just a few days away.
It’s a holiday where I gather with loved ones and give thanks for all the abundance in my life:
Dear family and friends
The opportunity to put my talents to their highest and best use
(Not to mention the fantastic feast my sister and brother-in-law host every year—thanks, Donna and Dave!)
It’s definitely a feel-good kinda day.
And as it turns out, that “gratitude glow” is real.
Science tells us that the benefits of gratitude include:
A greater sense of well-being
Improved sleep, optimism, and physical health (←except maybe when you eat WAY too many mashed potatoes)
Enhanced self-esteem, resilience, and empathy
Practicing gratitude has a positive umbrella effect on those around us.
When we acknowledge the people in our lives and express thanks for them, we improve our relationships and communication, helping them feel connected and appreciated. And then those initial recipients of our gratitude express and model their gratitude to another wave of people.
It’s a virtuous cycle worth repeating not just with your loved ones but also with your colleagues, partners, and clients.
There are numerous ways to express gratitude in the workplace. You could:
Pen a handwritten note to thank a mentor who’s had a meaningful and positive impact on your life
Give a colleague verbal props at a team meeting for how she handled a tricky situation
Call a client to check in and thank him for his business
The key to making your gratitude meaningful to others is to ensure that your actions align with three criteria:
1. Is it frequent?
Being grateful once a year doesn’t cut it; gratitude is a daily effort.
2. Is it genuine?
People can smell fake gratitude and ego puffery a mile away. Being grateful isn’t about scoring points; it’s about strengthening relationships. So be sincere with your gratitude.
3. Is it specific?
Saying “thank you” to someone means so much more when accompanied by specificity. When you take an extra step and include exactly what you’re thankful for, the receiver better understands why their actions incited gratitude—and is more likely to replicate them in the future.
By making gratitude a daily practice, you’ll not only improve your career, but you’ll also enhance your life.
And speaking of gratitude, what’s your stance on sending thank-you notes?
(I’m really hoping you said you’re a fan.)
It turns out that writing them after an interview highlights your personality—a surprisingly important factor that outweighs potential and education, according to a recent survey on what companies prioritize when considering prospective employees.
In my latest Forbes article, I share more on the survey and the top five ways you can showcase your personality to help you land your next job.
P.S. When I’m not writing this newsletter or ensuring my gratitude is frequent, genuine, and specific, I’m a social media ghostwriter. (Yep, that’s a thing). I help founders craft their stories to communicate and connect better, magnifying their reach and impact. (Think personal branding and thought leadership.) Learn more here.
P.P.S. Now that we’re inbox-exclusive (love that about us!), why not follow my musings across the interwebs on Forbes, LinkedIn (be sure to hit the 🔔 in the top right corner of my profile to get notified when I post!), Twitter, and Instagram too?
And if you really want to get meta, subscribe to my weekly LinkedIn newsletter, m o m e n t u m, featuring insights to help you maintain positive motion and continually grow your career. As a bonus, it links to ALL of my content for the week, so you’ll never miss a thing and keep the momentum going! (See what I did there? 😉)
P.P.P.S. You have great taste in newsletters, my friend—thanks for subscribing! You are subscribed, right? If not, let’s fix that; click the blue button.
While you’re at it, be sure to check out the archives to catch up on previous issues, and feel free to share this one with your friends using the button below. Or better yet, invite them to join our Illuminate Me tribe!