I once had the pleasure of being one of the first inductees into the Happiness Hall of Fame, an organization that honors people who are advancing happiness in the world. I was thrilled to be among other inductees from all walks of life such as athletes (Bubba Paris), film producers (Roko Belic) and Stanford professors (Dr. Fred Luskin). While people congratulated, praised and thanked me for my talk “Get High to be Happy”, I realized how important it is for every one of us to feel like we matter — and to acknowledge the people in our lives.
Try these 10 ways to show people how much they matter to you.
- SAY “THANK YOU”
Whether it’s the waiter handing you the check or your partner folding
your laundry, remember to say “thank you” and mean it. Don’t overlook the power of those two words and how they recognize a person.
- FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE
It’s often easiest to point out what your loved ones or employees do
wrong rather than what they do right. Next time you’re about to criticize someone in your life, stop and think of something good you can say about that person instead. Tough love should always be balanced with positive feedback.
- GIVE GIFTS
Think of a reason to give someone a gift outside of a birthday, anniversary or holiday. Or perhaps, have no reason at all! A gift could be a poem, a present, a meal, a compliment, an outing or anything special you do for another like the gift of time or listening.
- SPEAK YOUR APPRECIATION
Get into the habit of telling people what you love or appreciate about them. Say it when it counts the most and don’t wait until they’ve left you to say good things about the people in your life.
- BE A HUGGER
A hug or a shoulder rub can be all a person needs to feel like they’re appreciated. Touch creates a physical, emotional and spiritual connection that is critical at all stages of life from infanthood to adulthood.
- MAKE EYE CONTACT
Eye contact shows others that their presence, thoughts, and words are valuable to you.
- BRAG IN PUBLIC
If there’s someone in your life whom you feel should be recognized, do something public about it. It could simply be a toast during a small dinner gathering or a speech at a big party. What’s important is the intent to recognize someone in front of others.
- BE PRESENT
Nothing says “you don’t matter” more than picking up a call or texting while you’re with someone else. Turn off your cell phone and put it away. If you absolutely have to take a call, apologize, explain why and make it quick. It’s just good manners.
- KEEP YOUR PROMISES
Don’t be an undependable friend. If you’ve made plans with someone be respectful and show up. If you really can’t make it let the other party know asap. Your friend’s life and plans are just as important as yours.
- TREAT PEOPLE EQUALLY
We’re all part of the human race and deserve to be recognized equally.