Take the Step from Good to Great with Gratitude

So many people are “Good”. There are so many good people, good writers, good employees, good business owners, and good friends. What separates the great from the good? Well, quite a few things, but one big part is gratitude. Showing appreciation solidifies long-standing relationships. You might meet an ungrateful millionaire, but their success won’t last. All lifelong millionaires practice gratitude. The quicker you establish this as a habit and a value, the quicker you will see more opportunities be presented to you to grow and see success.

I started to notice early on that when I showed appreciation and gratitude to people for either the opportunities, the knowledge, or the aid that they gave me, the more I seemed to get. It isn’t manipulation, it is human nature. Teachers that I showed gratitude for were always willing to help. When I expressed appreciation to my supervisor for the opportunities to take on new responsibilities, I started receiving more opportunities that lead to promotions. The more you thank people for the things they do, the more good things people do to have you thank them for.

That was a tongue-twister, here it is again:

The more you thank people for the things they do,
the more good things people do to have you thank them for.

Here are three ways you can start showing more gratitude to the people around you, starting now!

Say “Thank You”, “You’re Welcome”, and “I appreciate it” with intent and meaningscreen-shot-2016-12-06-at-9-21-37-pm

Today’s lifestyles are focused on being quick, efficient, and to the point. You can completely catch someone off guard at the end of an interaction by stopping for a count and sincerely expressing gratitude using one of these phrases. Validate the things people do by acknowledging their effort, and they will be more inclined to do it again, especially next time they see you.

What I’ve Done:

  • Walked to a teacher at the end of class to simply say, “Thank You.”
  • Said “You’re Welcome” to my boss after they express gratitude for helping with a project.
  • Told my teammates or group members “I appreciate your time and help!” after meeting and working on a big project.

Leave a Note

If people don’t expect gratitude during a conversation, then they definitely do not expect it in writing. Leaving a quick note can leave a much longer lasting impression than anything you say. Many people I know, and I do this too, have kept notes and cards received from others. I’ve put them up on my desk so that I see them often and get a boost every once in a while. Writing a quick note can take less than 30 seconds. Seriously. Stop overestimating the amount of time it takes to be kind.

What I’ve Done:

  • When I submitted an assignment while completing my degree online, I could add a comment under the submission saying, “Thanks for your time reviewing this assignment and the other help you’ve given this semester. I appreciate it!”.
  • Left a note for my parents to find after I leave simply stating thank you for their example and guidance.
  • Sent an email to a coworker who is always reliable, expressing my gratitude and trust in them for being someone I can count on.

screen-shot-2016-12-06-at-9-23-33-pmAcknowledge People’s Greatness

Each of us has our own strengths, weaknesses, and passions. Something easy for you may be hard for me. When a teammate, a friend, a classmate, or eventually someone you may supervise shares an experience, or you see them in the act, where they fulfilled a responsibility that was clearly outside of their comfort zone, acknowledge that! It takes a great amount of willpower, effort, and confidence to step out of your comfort zone. It can be scary. Reward and validate their effort, this will help them feel appreciated and more inclined to do it again.

What I’ve Done:

  • When I hear someone I know talk about a test they just studied really hard for, and did well, I love to verbally acknowledge them. It is one thing to smile, or give a thumbs up. I would cheer them on with a “Wow! That is awesome!” or a “Good for you!”. High fives are also recommended.
  • When I see someone do something, and they either think no one saw (or didn’t know I was watching), I approach them when they are around others and acknowledge what they did by saying, “That was really cool what you did back there. Thanks for being a good example.”.


Showing gratitude might seem like an insignificant thing, but it isn’t. It is a very significant way to establish and build a strong relationship and trust. When people trust you, they give your more opportunities. When you follow through on those opportunities, you receive more opportunities. That leads to promotions and amazing opportunities. What have you ever done to show appreciation that may have seemed small, but lead to a great opportunity?

What have you ever done to show appreciation that may have seemed small, but lead to a great opportunity? Share in the comments and we can all benefit from your success together.



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