This blog from the TheRelationshipProtocol.com talks about appreciation. See “Notes for Professionals” at the end.
How do you react when someone at your home or work does something nice for you, or goes out of their way for you, or perhaps makes an effort to change how they respond or relate to you?
What about when someone makes your life a little easier, and/or does something that was helpful or meaningful to you? Do you tell them?
Do you say “thanks”?
Taking time to express appreciation and gratitude goes a long way.
A simple “thank you” makes the other person feel good about their effort, and this kind gesture encourages them to continue their positive behavior. Oftentimes in our closest and most important relationships, we take things for granted or we just assume the other person knows how we feel. We may even withhold expressing gratitude, for whatever the reason.
While you certainly don’t need to express appreciation for every morsel of effort, do consider that that everyone likes to be noticed. Keep in mind that in struggling relationships, expressing appreciation can a great way of changing the negative energy between the two of you.
It’s a simple gesture, but the rewards can be many.
Think of the bigger picture ––when you pay it forward, most people respond to the kindness they receive by being kind to someone else.
Notes for Professionals
During my meetings with clients, I often encourage them to express gratitude and appreciation to the other person for something they’ve done, or an effort they’ve made. Even a small gesture in a positive direction gets a nod.
Most of the time, people in struggling relationships feel unappreciated. They express that any effort they make frequently goes undetected, or is not acknowledged verbally by the other person, so why bother? However, as long as their statement of appreciation is sincere, the other person will most likely welcome your gentle encouragement, especially if this type of interaction is not typical in their relationship.
By respectfully directing your clients to take a moment to thank the other person for doing something positive in their relationship, you are enabling change in a stuck system. Our goal is to bring this way of thinking and responding into their relationship on a regular basis. We want it to translate into their world outside of our work together.