Everyone has bad days and as you’ve probably experienced, sometimes the best thing to happen on a bad day is receiving an unexpected compliment or friendly gesture. Those small things can make your day, so why not make an effort to make someone else’s day? It doesn’t matter whether it’s a stranger, friend, or colleague. A small compliment or friendly gesture goes a long way, and best of all, it doesn’t cost a cent to do.
How many people do you smile and say “hello” to on a daily basis? It’s so easy to jump right into a conversation or transaction without greeting someone. It’s even easier to sit next to someone or stand near them in line and pretend they’re not even there. Try smiling and saying hello — your pleasant greeting might brighten their day.
Many of us were taught as children that saying “please” was the correct thing to do. As adults, many of us also forget to add please when we’re asking for something. It’s amazing how much of a difference one word can make. By saying “please”, your statement becomes a polite request instead of a demand. Anyone who has worked in customer service knows how nice it can be to hear someone use “please” instead after a day full of people rudely demanding things.
Like “please”, “thank you” is one of those words that can instantly make a situation better. So many people forget to say “thank you” for small or large gestures that sometimes, saying it makes a big difference. Can you remember the last time someone genuinely thanked you for something? It felt great, didn’t it? So why not try to keep that feeling strong by thanking others for their work or generosity.
“Let Me Help You With That”
Regardless of how you want to phrase it, offering to help someone — whether by working with them on a project, holding the door for them, or carrying something they’re struggling with — is a great way to make their day. Sometimes it’s the small things that count and a simple, “I can help you with that!” makes all the difference in the world.
“You Did a Great Job”
People often need encouragement to feel good about themselves. Sometimes, unexpected or unsolicited praise is the best kind. It brightens your day and makes you feel good about everything you’ve accomplished. A sentence as simple as “you did a great job” can be said to anyone — children at school, family members, friends, or coworkers. Not only will it brighten their day, but it will give them a great confidence boost the next time they want to tackle a new project.
“Have My Seat”
If you commute to work or attend long meetings at the office, you know how aggravating it sometimes is to find a seat. But, you also know that sometimes there’s someone who wearier or more hassled looking that you — someone who would really love a second to sit down. It could be a pregnant woman, an elderly person, or a mother or father with children. It could even be someone who looks like they’ve had a rotten day and needs a moment to decompress. Offer up your seat. They might not take you up on the offer, but you might get a smile, and sometimes, just the offer is good enough to make their day.
“I Admire You For…”
You can use this is so many situations. From telling a friend you admire their integrity, telling a coworker that you admire their ideas, or telling a stranger that you admire their fashion choices. Complimenting someone on any of their attributes is a great way to make their day. They’ll remember your compliment for a long time and it’ll always bring a smile to their face.
“You’ve Made Progress”
This phrase can be changed as you see fit, whether it’s telling someone that you’ve noticed a positive change lately or that you’re proud of their accomplishments. It shows that you care enough about them to compliment them on a long term goal or change. They’ll appreciate the fact that you picked up on this change and that you’re applauding them for their achievements.
“Let Me Know If You Need to Talk”
Sometimes people don’t want to talk about something that’s bothering them. And while this phrase might seem trite, the meaning is usually genuine. It might not solve someone’s problems, but saying it will let them know that you care enough to be there if they need you.
“Have a Nice Day!”
Just as “hello” is a great way to start a conversation, “have a nice day” is a great way to end one. It’s a friendly way to let someone know that they’re in your thoughts and you wish them all the best. And sometimes a small, but pleasant goodbye is the only thing you need to bring a smile to someone’s face.
(Photo courtesy of LawPrieR)