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Showing Appreciation

In my family, Christmas has always been a time to show appreciation to others. We are thankful for the birth of Jesus and the hope He represents. We are also thankful for our friends and family members who are near and far!  As a little girl, I remember walking around our neighborhood with homemade bread and Christmas carols and then inviting many to come share a meal and time together. We made gifts for our teachers and gifts for one another. There were endless opportunities to show appreciation to others – and this legacy continues!  Here are 3 ways we can show appreciation to our colleagues and friends (could be family too…!)

  1. Say “thank you”.  Think of people who you particularly appreciate and let them know! Call them, visit them, send them a text message – or do all three! Be specific about why you are thanking them!  As humans, we can often easily see the negative or find reasons to critique others. When we pay attention to the positive and say “thank you” it can go a long way to foster gratitude in us and show appreciation for others. This can also strengthen the relationship with those we are thanking.  
  2. Send hand-written notes of appreciation.  While this is a time of giving and receiving Christmas or holiday cards, this can also be a time of sending personalized hand-written cards to a few people who have made a particular impact on you this year. Think of colleagues, friends or family members who have provide inspiration, supported you in a specific way, listened to you when you were having a difficult time or did something particularly noteworthy this year.  I encourage you to take a few moments to write some cards or letters and mail those too!
  3. Do something meaningful.  Think of ways that would particularly show your colleague, friend or family member appreciation. This could be giving them a small gift (their favorite coffee or a new leadership book) or could involve promoting their newest resource or tool to your partnership. If you have the ability (and are their supervisor), give them an extra afternoon off work. Maybe you volunteer to spend a few hours helping them make progress on an important project or you connect them to someone who would be a fantastic resource. Spend some time reflecting on what would be meaningful to a few people – and then do it!

So what about you? How are you going to show appreciation to colleagues, friends and family members this year?

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