Sincere Appreciation Stems from a Genuine Feeling of Gratitude


Think of the last time someone expressed appreciation for a quality or characteristic you have, or an action you took. Many people feel a sense of well-being, fulfillment, or elation when they are appreciated.

There are tremendous benefits to giving appreciation. Employees tend to become more engaged, productive, and committed to the organization’s success when they receive appreciation in the workplace. Individuals who are valued tend to carry to other relationships the positive feelings they get from being acknowledged.

Our relationships would almost certainly be stronger if we shared what we appreciate about each other more frequently. Wouldn’t it be incredibly powerful if the people associated with your organization were fully engaged and invested in the organization’s success and enjoyed doing business with you?

The key to offering sincere appreciation is a feeling of gratitude. How do we develop an attitude of gratitude?

We begin by being aware of what adds value to our lives. You might feel relief and satisfaction that a project was completed successfully, or you might be energized by an enlightening conversation with a co-worker that sparked a new idea, or delighted by the friendly and warm interactions your employees have with clients.

Our relationships would almost certainly be stronger if we shared what we appreciate about each other more frequently.

Observe the behavior and the positive impact it had on you or others. Pay attention to people who offer support and help you and your company succeed. Watch for both the tangible work product and the soft skills (dependability, conscientiousness, communication, and interaction skills) that are equally important in the workplace.

Once you get in the habit of identifying the qualities or behaviors that you feel grateful for, it becomes much easier to sincerely appreciate and acknowledge them.

While we recognize the importance of appreciating others, we may tell ourselves, “I’m too busy.” Many of us become so busy solving problems, dealing with deadlines, and maintaining the status quo that we don’t pay attention to what is special right in front of us. We focus so intently on the challenges in our day-to-day lives that we often miss noticing the wonderful people and events around us.

At the same time, we choose where we allocate our attention and energy. We can choose to spend more time paying attention to the things we’re grateful for. That change in focus can be powerful.

There may be people who have qualities or characteristics that you find annoying or difficult to be around. However, these same people may offer value in other ways.  Instead of focusing on what’s not working, you might pay attention to what is working.

I don’t suggest you ignore behavior that interferes or is not productive. I do suggest that by focusing on and acknowledging positive qualities and characteristics, you may see more of those and less of what you find difficult.

Even amidst hardship and challenges, there are reasons to be grateful. The opportunities for gratitude are often overlooked when facing difficult times. Looking for aspects of a situation where we feel grateful, even in the most challenging of circumstances, can help us identify new opportunities and can strengthen relationships.

Once you get in the habit of identifying the qualities or behaviors that you feel grateful for, it becomes much easier to sincerely appreciate and acknowledge them.

Over time, being grateful can become a habit. Just as with any other new skill, we improve by first gaining awareness. Developing an attitude of gratitude can be a very rewarding and beneficial habit. I encourage you to start today!

What and who are you grateful for? I bet those people would love to hear your appreciation.

Margy Bresslour is the Founder of Moving Messages, a company dedicated to encouraging the expression of appreciation. Moving Messages works with organizations to create a positive and productive culture where employees feel valued and are fully engaged, and where customers and clients love doing business. Margy offers consultation, coaching, and mentoring that develop individuals who thrive, cohesive teams that enjoy working together, and organizations that get rave reviews and improved outcomes.

  • Al Smith

    Wow. I love this Margy. Sounds a lot like that awesome CARE movement. Ha.
    Gratitude is the key. You hit a home run with this one. Hope to talk soon.

  • LitSuppGuru

    I love this article and I will share it. I am a firm believer in giving kudos and I practice it often. It’s amazing how some people are shocked to hear the kind words. People don’t do it enough. Reading this article felt like I was in my own head. Thanks Margy!

  • Margy

    I appreciate how CARing you are. Your enthusiastic endorsement of my article means a lot to me. Thanks for all the support you offer.

  • Margy

    Your comment is music to my ears! I’m often surprised and saddened when someone tells me – “No one’s ever told me that before. I didn’t know.” I hope more people embrace your attitude and give kudos where they are deserved. Your comment made me smile. Thanks for sharing.

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