Archive for March 23rd, 2012

March 23, 2012

Giving and Receiving Thanks!

Today I am very thankful for being nominated for blogging awards by my fellow bloggers.

To honor this personal “day of thanks”, I began pondering some considerations for giving and receiving thanks. I did not find much information on formal “rules” of giving thanks (with the exception of “Thank You” notes), so most of these suggestions come from my personal experience. I am very interested to hear everyone’s thoughts on this matter.

Giving Thanks

  • Say “thank you” anytime someone does someone nice for you! And I do mean everyone, even the people you may not like the best. Say “thank you” to everyone that does a service for you. Frequently saying “thank you” with sincerity any is a great way to practice appreciation and gratitude!
  • When showing appreciation, say “thank you” versus “I’m sorry”. Sometimes, when I have helped someone out, they may say “I am sorry that I took too much of your time”, or “I am sorry that I put you out”. In these situations, I would have much rather have heard “thank you for your time” or “thank you very much for your assistance”. When I hear “thank you”, I feel appreciated. When I hear “I am sorry”, I am puzzled since “I am sorry” is something you say when you have done something wrong. When we say “thank you”, we can elicit a sense of gratitude. When we say, “I’m sorry”, we are inadvertently conveying a message of regret and/or shame.
  • Reserve the sarcastic “thanks” for your friends that understand the humor of your intentions. When you are joking with your friends, sarcasm can be funny when used in moderation. However, if your co-workers and friends can no longer tell if your “thanks” is dripping with sarcasm or oozing with sincerity, you may have lost a significant “rapport –building” tool.
  • Avoid over-thanking. In most cases, a simple “thank you” followed by the respondents “your welcome” is sufficient. If you continue to say thank you after your thanks has been acknowledged, you may be wandering into the “creepy” zone. I know of many people who start to feel self-conscious when they are thanked too many times. I know of other folks who become wary of “over-thankers” since they begin to doubt that person’s sincerity.

Receiving Thanks

  • Adopt social convention. Receiving thanks is like receiving a gift. It is best to accept it graciously and acknowledge that the “thanks” is appreciated with a socially appropriate response such as “your welcome”. The response “it was nothing” may also be acceptable if it is stated only once.
  • Avoid “depreciating” a “thank you”. If we are in a personal space when we do not feel worthy of thanks, we may have the tendency of “arguing our worth for the thanks”.  This is the case where someone thanks us and we spend time and energy explaining to them that we are not worthy of this “thanks”. The person trying to gives thanks may leave the exchange feeling uneasy. Since we have “rebuffed” a thank you, we have chosen not to feel appreciated.

In compiling this list, I have to admit that I am not an expert on giving or receiving thanks. In fact many of the habits described above are things that I need to practice myself.

Please tell me what you think.