Make a Point of Appreciating Others—and Yourself
Offering an appreciation is an easy yet powerful way to acknowledge a coworker’s efforts. It’s one of the best ways to say thank you.
To be most effective when giving an appreciation, speak directly to the person you’re acknowledging. So you might say, “I appreciate you for . . .” or “I appreciated when you . . .” If that wording feels awkward, you can choose other words that feel more natural for you, such as “Thanks. I really liked it when you . . .” or “I’m impressed by the way you . . .” or “Wow, that was so clever of you to . . .”
You can give an appreciation for anything, whether large or small, critical to the team’s efforts or simply a thoughtful gesture. Actually, it’s the appreciations for small things that can be most valuable in contributing to a culture of kindness. It’s as simple as saying something like, “Thanks, Cindy, for bringing healthy snacks to the meeting,” or “Great advice, Jim. Thank you!”
It’s ideal to give appreciation in person, but when that’s not feasible, you can do it over the phone or by email or text. And don’t rule out a handwritten note to have maximum impact.
Some teams like to devote a few minutes in their team meetings to appreciations. Anyone who wants to can offer an appreciation to anyone else. This kind of public sharing can foster team cohesiveness, reduce stress, and help the team withstand the challenges it faces. For some people, though, this approach is too formal and staged. Fortunately, there’s no need to wait for a meeting to offer an appreciation; do it as soon as the thought comes to you.
While you’re making a point of offering appreciation to others, why not reflect on what you appreciate about yourself? Some people can readily appreciate themselves for their contributions and accomplishments, but other people have difficulty appreciating themselves, as though they don’t deserve to be acknowledged.
Wherever you are on the self-appreciation spectrum, it’s worth occasionally taking a few minutes of quiet time to reflect on what you appreciate about yourself. The list might be longer than you think.