7 Simple Ways to Show Appreciation to Loved Ones

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12973358_sTake a moment to look at the relationships in your life.  Whether they are right here in the same neighborhood or across the world, we are all blessed with people we appreciate.

When was the last time you expressed your appreciation to those individuals for the role they play in your life?  By expressing your gratitude, you not only make them feel good, but you communicate how much you value the relationship.  When relationships are healthy and satisfying, it is easy to take them for granted.  Here are some simple ideas for making your loved ones feel appreciated.

Plan a dinner date.  Inviting someone over for a home-cooked meal is fun way to spend time with someone you care about.  Often, we spend much of our social time surrounded by others in restaurants.  By inviting someone to your home, you communicate trust and respect.  It also provides the opportunity to relax and laugh the evening away.

Send a thank you card.  Sending a card, as opposed to a text message or email, is a very simple way to make someone feel very special.  A thank you card can be for something specific they have done or to say thank you for everything they do.  Either way, it will make them smile.

Ask them if they need anything.  By taking the time to ask your loved ones if they need anything, you show them that you are there for them.  If you live nearby each other, a text to see if they need anything from the store can go a long way.  Regardless of location, reaching out to someone to see if there is anything you can do for them with no strings attached is a great way to make someone feel important to you.

Invite a friend for tea or coffee.  If you know you are going to have some free time in the upcoming days, reach out to see if they would like to meet for a tea or coffee.  One of the easiest ways for someone to feel appreciated is to initiate a plan to spend time together.

Listen. The world can zoom by at a million miles per hour, and with the constant distractions we battle in our lives each day, it is becoming rare to have someone truly listen to us.  Be a good friend, and take the time to turn down your cell phone ringer to hear what they are experiencing.

Be aware of birthdays and special occasions.  With Facebook and a million other technologies, it is easy to wait for a social media channel to alert us of a dear friend’s birthday.  However, by putting birthdays, anniversaries, and other important dates, such as the day their loved one passed away, into your calendar, you are able to care for your friend on a deeper level than those who simply know their online personas.  

Include them with other friends.  Not all relationships are meant to cross over.  However, think of all the times you have mentioned one important friend in front of another.  If you feel everyone would be comfortable with one another, bringing those individuals together can strengthen your bonds and communicate how much you value their unique personality.

Each relationship is different and has unique needs.  Trust your understanding of the relationship boundaries, but don’t use those fences as an excuse to allow your appreciation to go unacknowledged.  Showing how much you value someone is an essential part of a healthy relationship.

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