Gratitude: 2 Small Words Change Everything

It’s such a small thing to say ‘thank you’ and these two small words cost you absolutely nothing and yet make a huge difference to if and how people remember you – and respond to you. Thanking people is often the difference that makes the difference as to whether people do what you want, get back to you, take on your opinion and it certainly affects the actual way they do what you ask them to.

To be noticed and remembered for the right reasons, we need to make people feel appreciated. An easy, effective and natural way to make people feel you appreciate them is simply to look for more ways to say ‘Thank You’ to them and to say it more. It’s so simple and it works in so many ways.

Once we start to look for how and where we can be more grateful, more appreciative of what people do and are doing, not just for us but around us, you’ll discover loads more opportunities to say ‘thank you’. And, interestingly, staying open and looking for ways to say ‘thank you’, to be grateful. Even if you don’t always like what’s happened, there’s always a lesson to learn.

  • ‘Thank you for your help’
  • ‘Thank you for letting me know’
  • ‘Thank you for thinking of me’
  • ‘Thanks in advance for doing that by Friday…’

Telling people you know they’ll do something and thanking them before they’ve done it, that’s where commitment and consistency, those powerful influencers, live.

‘Thank you’ also helps even if you don’t like what you’re being told. Try saying “ah, thanks for letting me know” or “hmm, thanks for telling me that, now what about etc.” If you say ‘thank you’ first, it means that the first thing you say isn’t negative and crucially, it buys you some precious time to decide what you do want to say.

Defined in the dictionary as ‘a polite expression used when acknowledging a gift, service or compliment or when accepting or refusing an offer’, saying ‘thank you’ for something you don’t want or don’t want to do is a really key piece in learning how to say ‘no’ without upsetting people. “Thank you for the opportunity and…”

There’s a great knock-on effect from saying ‘Thank You’ more of course. It makes you feel better too. It’s that whole ‘attitude of gratitude’ and it truly works. Simple.

So many people mutter to themselves ‘Well, they’re just doing their job’ ie why should I say ‘thank you?’ or tell me ‘I was so pleased with how they did that’ and yet when I ask the person ‘did you tell them you’re pleased?’ they invariably say the person was either doing what they were supposed to or they just assumed the person knew they were pleased. Uh oh.

A client told me recently that, as a service provider, when a customer phones her and says ‘thank you’ after she’s sorted things out for them, they immediately get better service from her next time they need her help.

As she then said ‘everyone likes to be appreciated, we’ve all got a lot going on’ and as William Arthur Ward, the famous American poet said ‘Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.’

There you go, simple and easy.


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