Karyn Buxman

Catching Up With Karyn

Posts Tagged 'Gratitude'

One Size Does NOT Fit All: 6 Low Tech Tips to Express Your Appreciation

After my piece on Grati-tweets and Grati-texts, I received an outpouring of emails, texts, and tweets from folks expressing their appreciation of me—wow! It felt great! One loyal reader, Deborah, told me how she’d sent a grati-text to a mentor who lived in another state. The mentor texted back how timely her message was. She’d had a difficult and emotional day and thanked her profusely for her thoughtfulness.

On the flip side, I received this response from a dear friend: “Dearest Karyn, I just wanted to let you know that I believe in the power of gratitude, certainly in the power of laughter and optimism, and HATED your suggestions!”

She went on to explain that she was not just low-tech, but NO-tech. She didn’t open e-cards, refused to text and had no social media accounts—not one!

I LOVED her note! (It’s so awesome when your audience makes your segue for you!) And because one size does NOT fit all, here are 6 tips for showing your appreciation via good-old-fashioned low-tech techniques.

1. Put it in writing: Send a letter, a real letter (or card, or even a postcard, post-it notes!) These days, a note sent via snail mail really stands out. Past president of Million Dollar Round Table, Scotty Brennan, told me (and 5,000 others in Bangkok) that every Sunday evening he takes time to write hand-written notes to some of his clients. So break out the stationary, buy a real, physical card—the kind you have to put a stamp on. Postcards can be quick and fun. And post-it notes come plain or illustrated in all shapes, colors, sizes—and you can stick one of those puppies on someone’s mirror, microwave, computer screen, steering wheel—use your imagination and show your appreciation AND creativity. I’ve even left notes of appreciation on the shower door in washable crayon! (Granted, I’m the one that cleans it up, later….)

2. Pick up the phone for a live conversation (if you get voicemail, call back later). Today so many folks would rather text than talk. But you can’t really express emotion in a text or email (no, emoticons do not count!) and it’s easier to be misinterpreted in writing than by talking. And I’m guessing there is someone in your life who would love to hear the sound of your voice.

3. Face to face: Meet for coffee, meet for lunch, meet for wine, a sunset, a walk. And while you are face to face, let them know that you think they are covered in awesome-sauce!

4. Send a small/personal/fun gift: key words: personal, fun. It doesn’t have to be extravagant or costly. My branding pal, Liz Goodgold, sent me a tin candy box last week that fit my business cards perfectly. It was such a treat and meant so much that she was thinking of me.

5. Publically recognize them. Many years ago, humorist Hope Mihalap shared with me her concept of living eulogies. She explained that we wait until our loved ones pass away to express to everyone how wonderful we thought they were. “Tell everyone how wonderful they are now, while they can still appreciate it!” Whether it’s at work, in your association, your church, or other social group, spread the word! Tell others you think this special person rocks!

6. Do an act of kindness for them: cook them dinner, offer to watch their kids, return their grocery cart for them (AFTER they’ve removed their groceries!). I awoke one snowy morning in Missouri and saw the driveway completely cleared. As I poked my head out the door my neighbor waved and said, “I figured as long as I was clearing my driveway, I might as well clear yours, too!” My hero!

Speaker, author, and neurohumorist Karyn Buxman, is committed to achieving global health through laughter and healing the humor impaired. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook for more tips on how humor and positive emotions can help you achieve success, significance and happiness.

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Grati-tweets & Grati-texts – And Other Ways to Express Gratitude (A High-Tech Approach!)

My alarm clock didn’t go off. Someone had already used up all the hot water before I could take my shower. We’d run out of coffee (gasp!). And to top it all off… my “fat pants” were feeling a bit snug—aaaaaauuuuggghhhhhh! This was shaping up to be a miserable morning. I heard my phone chime and my heart skipped a beat. Had I gotten my times mixed—was I late for work? I snatched my phone off the table and saw the text:

“I just wanted you remind you how amazing you are and how grateful I am that you’re in my life.”

My eyes got teary and my heart swelled. My sister, a busy physician three time zones away, had taken 30 seconds out of her busy schedule and had changed the course of my entire day.

Studies have shown that one way of increasing your happiness setpoint is to practice being grateful. Studies vary slightly in their findings, but in a nutshell, writing down three things daily will raise your level of happiness more than writing down a list of items your grateful for weekly. Sharing your gratitude or appreciation with another person boosts your happiness level even more.

And get this! In one study, people who focused on gratitude rather than hassles felt more optimistic about their future, felt better about their lives and even did an average of 1.5 more hours of exercise a week. (So I can be happier and shed the fat pants!)

In this fast-paced, high-tech world, it may seem unrealistic to try to squeeze in one more task on your to-do list. Instead of switching from high-tech to high-touch, you can be high-tech AND high-touch! Take 30 seconds to practice “Grati-text.” Think of someone who has made a real difference in your life, and shoot them a text telling them so.

Being happier has lots of benefits that go beyond just feeling better. You can be healthier, more creative, more productive, and people may find you more attractive! (Really!) So here are five more ways to practice High-Tech/High-Touch methods of gratitude so that you’ll be happier and healthier right away.

Here are 7 quick High-Tech AND Hi-Touch ways to express your gratitude:

1. Express your gratitude in what I call a Grati-tweet (a tweet that expresses gratitude): 140 characters or less of your appreciation via Twitter.

2. Whip out your phone and send a Grati-text (A text message that expresses gratitude): Tell them how much you appreciate them and why.

3. Use the video function on your phone to record your thanks in less than 30 seconds. Then email, text it or post it on Facebook.

4. Record a video of gratitude and upload it to YouTube or Vimeo.

5. Send an e-card to someone that says “I appreciate you.”

6. Leave a short voicemail for that special someone letting them know how special they are.

7. Create a playlist of songs that express your feelings of appreciation and upload on the recipient’s iPod, phone, or other device.

Speaker, author, and neurohumorist Karyn Buxman, is committed to achieving global health through laughter and healing the humor impaired. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook for more tips on how humor and positive emotions can help you achieve success, significance and happiness.

Posted in: Catching Up With Karyn

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