Small, Helpful Gestures With Big Impact
Thank-Yous and More“Whenever my husband and I have a dinner guest who brings a bottle of wine, we write her name and number on the label. If we don’t get around to drinking it that night, I’ll call when I finally find time to pour a glass. I get to say an impromptu thanks for her thoughtfulness, let her know I’ve enjoyed her gift, and catch up with my friend all at the same time.”
―Marnie Barnhorst, 59, La Jolla, California
- Are you the one being “showered”? Think about sending flowers to the host of your party a few days before the event.
- Express support and congratulations for a particular goal (conquering a fear of flying, quitting smoking, running a marathon) by sending a card with something small that relates to her accomplishment, such as an airline-size bag of peanuts, a pack of minty-fresh gum, or an energy bar.
- When a coworker is moving on, do something to continue a tradition you shared. If, say, 4 p.m. was your designated vending-machine break, send a pack of candy in an envelope with the instructions “Do not open until 4 p.m.”
“When my two daughters were little, I would dress them up for Halloween, take them to our local nursing home, and have them hand out candy. It taught my girls that we’re responsible for creating a society in which we want to live―one where people don’t get neglected just because they’ve reached a certain age.”
―Deborah Welsh, 56, Portage, Michigan
- Next time you find yourself in front of a single-purchase customer, don’t just offer to let her hop ahead of you. Ask the cashier to ring up that quart of milk or orange juice with your purchase and make the shopper’s day.
- Taking care of someone else’s children for the day? Snap photos of the kids playing and goofing around. Show them to Mom and Dad later, or send them using your cell phone.