Two of the most impressive and influential words in the English language are “thank you”. Yet, these days more and people are too busy and bothered to express these two special words. Saying “thank you” demands that you stop what you are doing or thinking for a moment, shift your focus from yourself to the other person, look them in the eye, put on your biggest smile and say the words with sincerity and authenticity. This seems to be an increasingly rare occurrence in our self-absorbed, self-obsessed and self-promoting world.
What has been forgotten is that saying “thank you” has tremendous benefits for both the giver and the receiver. If you are the giver, saying “thank you” gives you a warm and wonderful feeling that you have made someone feel amazing and have made a small yet significant difference in their life. If you are the receiver, you feel like you have received the gift of feeling valued, respected and recognized. You work harder and look for ways to improve what you do in your work and who you are as a person. Did you know that one of the top reasons that many people are either dissatisfied with or ultimately leave their jobs is because no one ever showed any appreciation or recognition for their work? No one ever took the time or made the effort to say “thank you” and mean it.
You can say “thank you” in many ways – some formal and some informal. The most memorable and sustainable way to give great gratitude is by creating a heartfelt and handwritten thank you note. Many shops and on-line businesses sell a variety of note cards, paper and envelopes. One thing that every successful business person should have in their toolbox is personalized stationery or a box of plain note cards or paper and envelopes that will effectively frame and support their communication. As you craft your message, imagine that you are saying the words to the individual in person. You can also envision their delight and surprise when they receive your hand-delivered note of thanks. If time, money or geography prevent you from doing this, then make sure that you craft a generous and thoughtful e-mail of thanks.
While timing is everything in most situations, there is no time limit or expiry date on telling them thanks or giving great gratitude. It’s never too late. A late thank you is far better than no thank you at all. So if you have neglected to say thank you, write a thank you note or send an e-mail thank you today.
Try this for one day. Take every opportunity to say “thank you” in every one of your interactions and communications – in person, by text, phone or e-mail with strangers, family, friends, clients/customers and colleagues. Notice what starts to happen as the day unfolds. You will feel more patient and positive, your day will be more productive and progressive and you will also give and receive far more than you could ever imagine.