10 Simple and Effective Ways to Let People Know They Matter

Do you let people know that they matter?

I am not usually prone to post about such topics but recently I was the recipient of an amazingly thoughtful gift that while not expensive, really made me feel like someone cared – “that I mattered.”

The Gift

the gift that inspired this post!

Then I realized, do we spend enough time letting people, even strangers, know that they matter? Kindness is FREE, it doesn’t cost a penny.

Well, being a firm believer in the saying, “it starts with one person to make the change” here are ten simple ways to show people that they matter as we head into the New Year.

This is the list that I have come up with so far as I strive to be a better person in 2008:

Smiles cost absolutely nothing and there is a good chance you might just brighten someone’s day and change their whole outlook.

*Do a random act of kindness
I am constantly amazed at how many people will not even hold the door open for folks entering the same building. A random act of kindness does not have to be a huge gesture, but even letting someone cross the street, or giving way to an oncoming car, can have an impact.

Listening is a great way to let people know that they matter. If someone comes to you seeking your input on an issue, don’t dismiss them and hope that they will go bother someone else. Have a little patience and take the time to truly listen.

*Help someone who is less fortunate than you.
The people of the world are more productive and wealthy than ever before. However, there are an amazing amount of global citizens who are having a very difficult time trying to survive from day to day. If you have the chance, even if it is in your hometown, go ahead and help a person (or family) who might not have as much as you.

*Give someone a chance
I know it is a big step but if you know of an individual, or even have an acquaintance, that has been trying to become your friend, or get to know you better, then go ahead and give them a chance. You never know, they might become your best friend.

*Assist a neighbor
In this day and age, at least in the U.S. many of us don’t even know our neighbors. I wonder if this is true for all of the world? Next time you see your neighbor, especially if they are a senior citizen, give them a hand or offer to carry in their groceries.

*Respond to an email
With respect to the interview series that I am currently running, I have to send many emails, whether it is an initial inquiry or a follow up to determine if someone will participate. If you receive emails (from anyone) take a few minutes out of your busy schedule to reply. Or, better yet, send an unsolicited email to an old friend, or someone who posted something that made you think, or smile.

*Don’t be judgmental
I realize that this can be difficult at times, and we all have preconceived notions when dealing with people, however, make an effort not to judge the people that you come into contact with and I am sure many will appreciate your efforts.

*Give a simple gift
Without a doubt, the best gifts are free. To let someone know that they matter try giving a simple gift (a note, a picture, etc).

*Be nice
I cannot quantify this with any scientific proof, but I would have to believe that it takes far less energy to be nice to people than it does to be mean or angry towards them. So, the next time you have the opportunity be nice to someone and I am sure it will come back to you many times over.

What are your suggestions to let someone know that they matter?

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