No matter who you are, you are looked up to by at least one person. Possibly many people. It could be your child, your friend, your co-worker, or maybe even your boss.Why not make a conscious, concerted effort to make their day? Not only does it make them feel good, but it can help to make them more productive.
It’s Not Just Nice
I’m pretty proud of being fluff-free here at Reboot Authentic, and I stand by that with this post.I would argue that a few seconds of positive feedback isn’t just a nice thing to do, it’s also a legit, concrete method of getting things done.Think of a time when someone who you admired told you that they appreciated something you were doing, thanked you for doing a good job, or complimented you in some way. I’ll wager it gave you a huge energy and confidence boost, didn’t it? Afterward you were likely more productive, too.
My Kick In The Pants
Someone made my day today while I was working on a project that is nowhere near complete. At this point of the project it’s a pretty thankless job with very little feedback, so it’s hard to tell if it’s going well – and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by it.This person is someone I look up to. I don’t really know her all that well, but I admire her work and opinion a great deal. She got a glimpse of my project today and shot me a short email complimenting various aspects of it.What a boost! I instantly wanted to attack the project again – and did so with as much enthusiasm as I had when the project began. I bet she spent 20 seconds typing the email and it gave me a month’s worth of ambition.
Think of the power you have to boost other people’s productivity and mood with very little effort.
Tell Me What’s Right For Once
In reality very few of us take the time to do that for people. We get into that whole busy, busy, no-time-to-waste mode that sucks all the enjoyment out of life and work – and we neglect to point out the things that are going well.When we get into that busy mode, we usually only communicate with people when we need something from them or when something is wrong. That’s a horrible way to operate, isn’t it? It conjures up images of someone on the other end of my phone call looking at their caller ID and thinking, “Awww, crap. It’s HIM. I wonder what’s wrong.”That’s not the emotional response any of us want our names to elicit. It’s a lose-lose for both parties.
Our Own Little Kick-In-The-Pants Experiment
Back to that surge of energy and confidence you felt when someone took a few seconds out of their day to compliment you. It gave you a kick in the pants, right? It gave you some juice and made you want to go mix it up bare-knuckle boxer style.Try this little experiment with me and let’s see what we can make happen.
Make a list of people who you admire in one way or another. I’ll get you started…
Your parent.Your spouse.Your child.Your employee.Your boss.Your client.Your dry cleaner.A clerk at the convenience store who you see every day.
Write it down…or make it a mental list if you’re a “save the ink pen” activist – but do make a list. Think of something that person does that you sincerely appreciate or think they’re good at…and tell them.One rule: It has to be a sincere compliment, not just some stupid comment so you can say you did it.
As an example, let’s use the convenience store clerk mentioned on the list above.
Stupid:“Hey. Way to make accurate change! Plus, I need a lottery ticket.”
Sincere:“Man, you’re always happy when I come in here. I appreciate that first thing in the morning!”
See how that works? It’s not hard, it takes no time at all, and you have just given that person a positive kick in the pants that they will likely spread like a happy little virus to other people who they come in contact with.Give it a try – and let me know what happens.Go make it an awesome day…for someone else.
It’s comment time!Tell us about a time when someone made your day.Go start doing this exercise and tell us how people reacted to you.Photo Credit: Peter Shanks