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Appreciation: A Key to People’s Hearts

Posted on: September 1st, 2011 by Dr. Angela Bisignano

 

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If you want to make a difference in someone’s life try appreciating that person. If influencing people’s lives for the better is important to you, then let them know that they matter to you. Appreciation is a key component that can make all the difference in influencing someone’s heart. A plain and simple concept; yet, often forgotten and left out of the people equation. Mother Teresa once said, There is more hunger for appreciation and love in this world than for bread.

People by nature gravitate towards individuals who instill in them a sense of value. People are paying attention to those who are caring and genuinely interested in their lives. People want to know that you appreciate them. Theodore Roosevelt once wrote: “No one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.” A simple and meaningful way to let people know you care is by appreciating them.

According to Merriam Webster’s Online Dictionary, appreciation means the following:

  • Recognition of the quality, value, significance, or magnitude of people and things.
  • A judgment or opinion, especially a favorable one.
  • An expression of gratitude.

Here are 3 reasons why appreciation matters:

  1. People at their core need to feel valued and loved. This is a fundamental truth about all human beings. It is the way God created us. In the wise words of William James, The deepest craving in human nature is the craving to be appreciated.
  2. People need to hear that who they are matters. People long to know that their life is worth something significant.
  3. People need to know that their contribution can make a difference. Most people at their core need to know that with their life they can contribute something. God has created us to be part of His greater plan in the world.

If you want to make a difference in this area, try the following. For one day make it your goal to appreciate people. Go out of your way and be intentional about this. Here are some ways to get you going:

  •  Tell someone that you value and appreciate them.
  •  Give someone something to do that communicates you are trusting them with a greater responsibility than usual.
  • Identify something of value in someone’s life that you recognize as outstanding. Tell the person.
  • Tell someone you are thankful for their contribution.
  • Reward a job well done.

The beauty about appreciation can be summed up in this quote: Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well. ~Voltair

Can you think of a time when someone went out of their way to appreciate you? How did it make you feel?