thankfulness http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/11509/all en-US Gratitude and Frugality http://www.wisebread.com/gratitude-and-frugality <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/gratitude-and-frugality" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/girls_hugging.jpg" alt="Girls hugging" title="Girls hugging" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I've been working a lot lately with the concept of gratitude and how it can attract amazing things into your life. And in so doing, I'm amazed at how my own life, happiness, and attitude has transformed.</p> <p>A few months ago, I was dealt some heavy blows that knocked me back a few steps. Ironically I was simultaneously slated to write a post about <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/big-list-of-things-to-be-happy-about">things to be happy about</a>, which was a lucky stroke, as it started me on my path of exploring gratitude. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-say-thanks">25 Ways to Say Thanks</a>)</p> <h3>The Cost of Expressing Gratitude</h3> <p>Gratitude in its purest form is absolutely free. It's an emotion simply borne of being thankful for something or somebody.</p> <p>How we choose to <em>express </em>our gratitude towards others is where cost can become a factor. This is when we start dealing with social customs, politics, and expectations &mdash; which create the varying price-tag for thankfulness.</p> <p>But gratitude is about so much more than simply expressing thanks to somebody for something. We can be grateful for all sorts of things, and that gratitude &mdash; in turn &mdash; can bring so many more amazing things into our lives.</p> <p>Simply holding a grateful state of mind can be transformative in itself.</p> <h3>The Power of a Passing Smile</h3> <p>I met a man who suffered a series of traumatic vehicle accidents, the last of which left him paralyzed and completely disfigured. After dozens of reconstructive surgeries, he had lost his confidence, happiness, and hope.</p> <p>His savior came one day, when he was out and about (in his wheelchair). His self-esteem was so shot that he usually averted other people's eyes, which normally expressed horror at his disfigurements.</p> <p>But one fleeting look upwards one day revealed a woman who was walking by, who simply gave him a passing smile.</p> <p>Nothing more. Just a smile.</p> <p>That smile changed this man's life. With a renewed surge of energy and commitment, he underwent the remaining surgeries, and eventually moved on to recover from his paralysis in ways that even the doctors hadn't predicted was possible.</p> <p>The passing smile didn't cost that woman a thing. And to this day she probably has no idea, but it changed &mdash; even saved &mdash; a man's life.</p> <p>So gratitude &mdash; and expressing it &mdash; can be very frugal indeed.</p> <p>This is not to say we should all walk around with smiles plastered on our faces &mdash; especially if they're not sincere. But if we generally focus on gratitude and the things we are grateful for, our chances of being bright and positive are significantly higher.</p> <h3>Finding and Expressing Gratitude (Frugally)</h3> <p style="margin-bottom: 0cm">Here are just a few ways to feel and express gratitude &mdash; almost none of which cost money.</p> <ol> <li>The next time you cook a big meal, spontaneously invite your neighbor to join you, or share your leftovers with somebody. (Hint &mdash; bake a cake and share it, and you'll have lots of grateful friends!)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Start a gratitude journal. Don't worry about having to write something in it every day. Simply carry a small notebook around wherever you go, and jot down things you are grateful for. By reframing your day in this way, you may discover many things (big and small) that you're grateful for.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Join <a href="http://www.couchsurfing.org" target="_blank">CouchSurfering</a> or another hospitality exchange site and host a traveler visiting your home town. All you have to do is offer up a place to sleep (by being grateful for the roof over your own head), and the gratitude that you'll get in return from a weary traveler can be enormous.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Eat consciously. Next time you enjoy a good meal, focus entirely on that meal. Consider the journey of the food from its origins to your plate, and the number of people's lives it affected along the way.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Call your mother on your birthday &mdash; and thank her. (She had a lot to do with it.)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Make handmade cards. A lovely hand-written note (especially if the card itself is handmade) is a beautiful way to express gratitude. It doesn't even have to be a special occasion &mdash; in fact, the more mundane the day, the more special the card becomes.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Go out for a day with your camera and take pictures of everything. When you peer at the world with the eye of a photographer, you tend to see, discover, and appreciate things you never previously noticed.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Try being grateful when something bad happens. For example, maybe missing that bus and being late for work leads to meeting somebody new or some other positive experience you might not otherwise have had. Or conversely, maybe this minor mishap helped you to avoid a major one.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Start a game of &ldquo;pay it forward&rdquo; at the drive-thru. Pay for the coffee that the person behind you has ordered, so when they drive up to the window they have a lovely surprise from a complete stranger. Hopefully they'll &ldquo;pay it forward&rdquo; and do the same for the car behind them.</li> </ol> <h3>The Effects of Gratitude</h3> <p>As with the law of attraction, the effects of expressing gratitude can't be directly measured, but could certainly be attributed to holding a positive state of mind and being.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0cm">Just ask anybody who as developed a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/vision-boards-dream-big-play-with-pictures-and-watch-your-life-change">vision board</a>, played the <a href="http://community.careonecredit.com/b/life_balance/archive/2011/11/07/finding-money-literally-with-the-prosperity-game.aspx">prosperity game</a>, or looked at <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/feeling-stuck-100-ways-to-change-your-life">100 ways to change their lives</a>; some amazing things can happen by simply <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/big-list-of-things-to-be-happy-about">reframing your way of thinking</a>.</p> <p>Since I've started actively focusing on gratitude on a daily basis, not only does everything tend to flow, but people are saying things like I &ldquo;have magic in me.&rdquo; A friend (who is a very straight-laced scientific sort of guy) told me he saw my aura &mdash; something that he wouldn't have believed in if he hadn't seen the white glittery light emanating from me.</p> <p>I don't have magic powers, and who knows &mdash; maybe the friend who saw my aura was just drunk. But I do believe that acting out of positivity, being grateful for the many things &mdash; little and big, simple and complex &mdash; we have in life, can lead to amazing things.</p> <p>And just like the passing smile the saved a man's life, it can have a ripple effect that nobody can possibly predict or control.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fgratitude-and-frugality&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FGratitude%2520and%2520Frugality.jpg&amp;description=Gratitude%20and%20Frugality"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Gratitude%20and%20Frugality.jpg" alt="Gratitude and Frugality" width="250" height="374" />&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nora-dunn">Nora Dunn</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/gratitude-and-frugality">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-unbelievable-visualization-board-success-stories">3 Unbelievable Visualization Board Success Stories</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/good-luck-bad-luck-who-can-tell">Good Luck, Bad Luck: Who Can Tell?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-free-ways-to-cheer-yourself-up">30 Free Ways to Cheer Yourself Up</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/21-ways-to-make-a-big-financial-change">21 Ways to Make a Big Financial Change</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-be-a-more-positive-person">How to Be a More Positive Person</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Personal Development gratitude positive thinking thankfulness Thu, 15 Dec 2011 11:24:21 +0000 Nora Dunn 821748 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Important Lessons Frugal Parents Teach Their Children http://www.wisebread.com/7-important-lessons-frugal-parents-teach-their-children <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-important-lessons-frugal-parents-teach-their-children" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/kids_running.jpg" alt="Happy kids running" title="Happy kids running" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I have pretty strong and unswervable opinions about how I want to raise my kids; a key item being that I don't want to spoil them. But sometimes the Mom-guilt creeps up on me, especially when I compare myself to how a lot of people around me are raising their kids. Am I depriving mine by not giving them lavish birthday parties, name-brand wardrobes, frequent kid-centered vacations, lots of meals out, and brand-new toys?</p> <p>There's nothing wrong with that stuff, but when I stop and think about it all, I realize what I am giving them by being a frugal parent. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-jobs-for-children">Five &quot;Jobs&quot; for Children</a>)</p> <h3>1. The Gift of Creativity</h3> <p>Every kid is creative, we know that. But sometimes we can actually hinder that creativity by throwing so many ready-made toys at our kids that they don't have to imagine anything for themselves. There's nothing more amazing than the power of a child's imagination, and when I watch my kids construct forts and fairylands out of boxes and blankets, or invent games that entertain them for hours and involve no toys at all, I'm in awe.</p> <h3>2. An Understanding of How Money Works in the Real World</h3> <p>You might not have noticed this yet, but...in the real world, you don't get everything you want. Stuff isn't free (usually). You have to work for your money, and when you spend it, it's gone. Far better for kids to learn this one lesson and day at a time than to grow up with deep delusions about their own entitlement.</p> <h3>3. An Appreciation of the Simple Things</h3> <p>A couple of week ago, my husband and I decided to take our four young kids out for a special treat &mdash; dinner and a movie. We told them the kids to hop in the car for a surprise, and for the ten minutes we were in the car, they were nearly bouncing out of their seats in anticipation. Their top guess? That we were going for a walk. A walk.</p> <p>And they were thrilled at the thought.</p> <p>Lest you think our kids never get to do anything more fun than walking, let me clarify that we regularly do fun stuff as a family. And we spend money on our kids. But our most frequent choice of family fun is simple stuff: playing at the park, going for walks, hiking through the woods, or playing with the sprinkler in the yard. And as a result, our kids value these very simple (and very frugal) activities as highlights.</p> <p>They were also really excited when we told them we were going out to eat and then to a movie...though our 3-year-old did ask, as we left the theater, if we could go on a walk now.</p> <h3>4. The Habit of a Less-Wasteful Life</h3> <p>When you live frugally, or at least attempt it, you tend to buy less and throw away less. You want to get value out of what you purchase, so you become more aware of quality (will this last, or will it break?) and true need (is this a need or a desire?). You also become more adept at repurposing and reusing items instead of just tossing them out. The benefits? You save money, live a greener life, and help your kids learn to do the same.</p> <p>It can be kind of a drawback at times; a few days ago my oldest daughter caught me in the middle of a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/downsizing-with-kids">closet purge</a>. She started picking through the trash bag beside me, pulling out items I just wanted to get out of the house and berating me (gently) &mdash; &quot;Mom, we can use this for something else!&quot;</p> <h3>5. A Vision for Work as a Normal Part of Life</h3> <p>I love working. Don't get me wrong &mdash; I also love long, lazy weekends; sleeping in; and vacations. But work is good, a blessing and not a curse, and I want my kids to anticipate work, not dread it. Work is both the ability to turn time into money and the ability to create value through what you produce. Work can be earning a paycheck or tending a garden, and both types of work give you a return on your labor. Part of our frugal lifestyle is buying less and producing more for ourselves through our own work rather than through dependence on someone else's work. It's something we'll teach and include our kids in more as they get older.</p> <h3>6. The Ability to Solve Problems</h3> <p>Money can't buy everything, including love and happiness, but money can buy a lot of solutions to common problems. When you have enough money to spare, it becomes so easy to just fix your problems by throwing money at them. Limited funds, on the other hand, mean that you have to force yourself to think through other ways to solve your problems. Car breaks down? Fix it yourself or barter with a mechanic friend. No money for a lavish birthday gift? Make something special and unique instead. I want my kids to learn to think through their problems and come up with their own solutions, and being frugal is helping us to teach them how.</p> <h3>7. A Financially Independent Future</h3> <p>Of course, there's no guarantee that just because we live a frugal lifestyle our kids will be financial experts. But I think they have a better chance of becoming financially independent adults as we teach them the financial principles we're learning. We're communicating, through our lifestyle and the daily decisions we make, concepts like how important it is to stay out of debt, how it's better to pay cash for purchases, how credit can leave you in a hole, how the quality of what you purchase matters, how your own ability to work and save is powerful, and how you choose what you do with every dollar you have. I just hope they're paying attention.</p> <p>Being frugal doesn't make me a super mom. I make plenty of mistakes everyday, but I do think that being frugal &mdash; even when I don't want to be &mdash; is helping me to raise my kids to be more self-sufficient, savvy with their money, creative, and open to adventures. I also value that being frugal has opened our life up to the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/being-generous-on-a-budget">generosity</a> of other people. We've not only learned how to receive, we've also learned that we all have something to give. That's a lesson I want my kids to have for life.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/annie-mueller">Annie Mueller</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-important-lessons-frugal-parents-teach-their-children">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-prepare-your-kids-to-live-on-their-own">How to Prepare Your Kids to Live On Their Own</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-bad-money-habits-youre-teaching-your-kids">4 Bad Money Habits You&#039;re Teaching Your Kids</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-having-kids-makes-you-more-frugal">8 Ways Having Kids Makes You More Frugal</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/surefire-ways-to-save-on-summer-camp-costs">Surefire Ways to Save on Summer Camp Costs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-financial-gifts-to-give-your-kids-this-year">6 Smart Financial Gifts to Give Your Kids This Year</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Lifestyle children teaching kids about money thankfulness Wed, 22 Jun 2011 10:24:11 +0000 Annie Mueller 496395 at http://www.wisebread.com 25 Ways to Say Thanks http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-say-thanks <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/25-ways-to-say-thanks" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/thank_you_flower.jpg" alt="Thank-you flower" title="Thank-you flower" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>&quot;Thank you.&quot;</p> <p>Those two little words (or &quot;thanks&quot; if you want to be quick about it) can mean a lot. Or, depending on how you wield them, they can mean almost nothing. Just like&nbsp;&quot;How are you?&quot; or &quot;I love you,&quot; &quot;Thank you&quot; is a phrase that can hold great weight or have all the heft and permanence of a morning fog.</p> <p>I've been thinking recently about how I say thank you. Like many people, I was taught growing up that when someone gave me a birthday or Christmas gift, I had to send that person a thank-you note. Writing those notes a child, I don't remember thinking much about how I was actually thankful for the gifts; rather, I considered the process of writing thank-you notes akin to brushing your hair. It wasn't something I wanted to do, but it was one of those things that people just <em>did</em>.&nbsp;</p> <p>Recently, though, I have both received some thanks that really touched me and wanted to show my appreciation to people in a way that resonated, which led me to compiling the list below. With every single one of these ideas, I would say there are two important things to always keep in mind: Be sincere and show that you care, just as someone recently cared for you.&nbsp;(See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/youre-doing-it-wrong-moron-5-tips-for-giving-better-compliments">You're Doing It Wrong, Moron: 5 Tips for Giving Better Compliments</a>)</p> <h3>1. Write a Note</h3> <p>For all of my grumbling about writing thank-you notes as a child, I believe that a considered, personal thank-you note is almost always a great way to show gratitude &mdash; especially if it's written on real, made-from-wood-pulp paper. Saying thanks over email or in an e-card is increasingly prevalent because it's easy. But the effort it takes to make or buy a card, or even just write on a piece of lined paper, shows that you really care.</p> <h3>2. Give Food</h3> <p>Sweet or savory, homemade or store-bought, food is always a good way to say thanks. Whether you're making dinner or buying cookies, do what you can to find out what the person you're thanking likes. While the gesture is still, erhm, &quot;sweet,&quot; your thank you will be a little awkward if you make peanut-butter cookies for someone with a peanut allergy.</p> <h3>3. Clean Something</h3> <p>A room, a car, a house, a dog &mdash; the gift of your time and elbow grease is a great way to show your appreciation.</p> <h3>4. Return Items in Better Condition Than When You Borrowed Them</h3> <p>If someone lent you something, show how much you appreciate it by taking better-than-good care of it. Similarly, if you were given something in borrowed Tupperware, return it with food in it (and I'm not talking about old leftovers).</p> <h3>5. Say It as a Surprise</h3> <p>One of the sweetest thanks I ever heard of was from an old college classmate. While we were working in the photo lab one day, she reached in her pocket and pulled out a note her boyfriend had put there for her to find.</p> <h3>6. Say It in Public</h3> <p>Everyone likes to be recognized (well, most of the time &mdash; please don't surround me in a circle of clapping waitstaff if I am celebrating my birthday at your restaurant). Whether at work, on your blog, or in front of a group of friends or family, share why you're thankful for the person or people.</p> <h3>7. Return the Favor</h3> <p>Performing favors shouldn't be an eye-for-an-eye situation, but if someone gave you a ride, watched your kids, or helped you out in another way, do the same or look for another favor you could do.</p> <h3>8. Give a Little Gift Card</h3> <p>Give an unexpected gift card of $5 or $10 to a coffee shop or bookstore. Just don't purchase a little gift card to something like an expensive restaurant. That's like saying, &quot;Thanks, now go spend a lot of your own money to use this gift.&quot; Kind of weird.</p> <h3>9. Pick Up the Bill</h3> <p>If you're out for coffee or a meal, pay the tab.</p> <h3>10. Say It on the Phone</h3> <p>Hearing someone's voice can be powerful. Call before you email.</p> <h3>11. Do It Face-to-Face</h3> <p>Even better than on the phone, say thank you face-to-face. Showing that you're making an effort is touching.</p> <h3>12. Donate to a Charity</h3> <p>Instead of spending money directly on the person you'd like to thank, donate that money to the person's favorite charity in his or her name.</p> <h3>13. Be Happy</h3> <p>Did someone do something that made you <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-be-happy">happy</a>? Say it, and show it. There are plenty of other times to whine and worry. Remember to be grateful and enjoy what you were given, and the person will be happy that he was able to brighten your day.</p> <h3>14. Organize Others</h3> <p>If you're part of a group thanking an individual or another group, be the one to organize everyone, whether it's all signing a card, pitching in for a gift, or arranging a get-together. Don't wait for someone else to do it. If you're not the person who &quot;should be&quot; in charge of such a rally, reach out to the person who would be (such as a boss) and ask if you can arrange something. There's a good chance that person will agree &mdash; and be thankful someone else it taking care of it.</p> <h3>15. Give an Award</h3> <p>This can be as big and serious or as easy and silly as you want. On the easy and silly side, draw a certificate, create a trophy by gluing together thrift-store finds, or buy an award ribbon &mdash; many designs are available for around a dollar at party stores.</p> <h3>16. Take a Picture</h3> <p>Snap a picture showing how you're using someone's gift, and send it over in an email or a card.</p> <h3>17. Make a Recommendation</h3> <p>If a coworker really came through for you, tell her boss or offer a recommendation on LinkedIn. You might just help her get a raise, promotion, or new job.</p> <h3>18. Teach a Skill</h3> <p>Offer to teach something you know, whether it's cooking, knitting, or something less practical but amusing like how to say curse words in another language.</p> <h3>19. Pay It Forward</h3> <p>Say thanks by doing something nice for someone else. This isn't the most direct thank you, because you certainly don't want to go reporting your good deed back to the person who did something for you and sound like you're looking for approval.</p> <h3>20. Make Art</h3> <p>Find a decorative way to say thanks. This can be as intensive or as easy as you like, from cross-stitching and framing a thank-you note (you crafty person, you), to drawing a doodle that someone could tack up in a cubicle.</p> <h3>21. Give Flowers</h3> <p>Flowers are unnecessary, temporary, and certainly not useful &mdash; but that's part of why I love them as a thank-you gift. They're absolutely lovely to have around and an indulgence that most people never purchase for themselves. Plus, since they have a limited life, flowers won't sit around adding to an accumulation of stuff. You can also go the long-lasting route and buy a small potted plant like an African Violet or even an herb for the kitchen.</p> <h3>22. Ask About Needs</h3> <p>While it might ruin the element of surprise, asking people what they need also ensures that you're giving them something they really could use.</p> <h3>23. Give Something Useful</h3> <p>Too often, thank-you gifts are needless stuff that while appreciated, just tends to accumulate. Instead, say thanks by giving something that can be used. I've received <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/urban-green-reusable-shopping-bags-for-folks-on-the-move">reusable shopping bags</a> as wedding favors, awesome metal water bottles from employers, and a personalized notebook from a friend.</p> <h3>24. Make Time</h3> <p>Schedules are hectic. There is always, always something else to do. Simply making time for a person &mdash; to talk, to help out, to even just watch a movie together &mdash; is a great way to show that you care.</p> <h3>25. Just Say It</h3> <p>While I love meaningful, considered thanks, be careful not to over-think it. If you hem and haw too long about how to thank someone, there's always the risk that you just won't. Even if it's just an email, or a moment while you walk by in the hallway, let people know how much you appreciate what they did.</p> <p><em>What is your favorite way to say thanks?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F25-ways-to-say-thanks&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F25%2520Ways%2520to%2520Say%2520Thanks.jpg&amp;description=25%20Ways%20to%20Say%20Thanks"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/25%20Ways%20to%20Say%20Thanks.jpg" alt="25 Ways to Say Thanks" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/meg-favreau">Meg Favreau</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-say-thanks">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-importance-of-friendly-letters">The Importance of Friendly Letters</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/youre-doing-it-wrong-moron-5-tips-for-giving-better-compliments">You&#039;re Doing It Wrong, Moron: 5 Tips for Giving Better Compliments</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-favorite-funny-christmas-gifts">My 5 Favorite Funny Christmas Gifts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-places-to-stash-cash-in-your-home">The Best and Worst Places to Stash Cash in Your Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/debit-or-credit-which-one-should-you-choose-at-the-checkout">Debit Or Credit? Which One Should You Choose At The Checkout?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips appreciation gift ideas thank you cards thankfulness Mon, 28 Feb 2011 13:36:33 +0000 Meg Favreau 495634 at http://www.wisebread.com You're Doing It Wrong, Moron: 5 Tips for Giving Better Compliments http://www.wisebread.com/youre-doing-it-wrong-moron-5-tips-for-giving-better-compliments <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/youre-doing-it-wrong-moron-5-tips-for-giving-better-compliments" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/compliment.jpg" alt="Sign: &quot;You are beautiful&quot;" title="Sign: &quot;You are beautiful&quot;" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There&rsquo;s no denying that people love words of affirmation. Everyone enjoys being told when they do an exceptionally good job or when they look nice on a special day.&nbsp;</p> <p>Then again, receiving compliments is a relatively simple and passive experience.&nbsp;Giving legitimate, truly thoughtful, and heartfelt compliments is something else entirely. In an era of instant, faceless communication, the art of giving meaningful compliments might be headed the way of the dodo.</p> <p>Thought and intention are a big part of the problem. A lot of us regularly offer compliments to friends and loved ones. But those words so easily bleed into the background, tossed out with minimal thought or no real consideration.</p> <p>A genuine compliment can boost work performance, change a person&rsquo;s outlook on their day, or do countless other things you'll probably never know.&nbsp;Here are few tips for giving genuine, thoughtful compliments.</p> <h2>Be Sincere</h2> <p>Don&rsquo;t give a compliment just because you want to be in someone&rsquo;s favor. Others can tell when you are being insincere, which can spell bigger troubles and doubts about your intentions and character. When you give a compliment, make sure that you actually mean your words.</p> <h2>Avoid the Usual</h2> <p>Anyone can say &ldquo;good job&rdquo; or &ldquo;nice outfit.&rdquo; These types of generic compliments tend to have little impact on the recipient. When you give a compliment, make sure you wait for the opportune moment and embrace specificity. Choose words that embrace something truly exceptional. Not only will this demonstrate your awareness, but it will also let the recipient know their efforts are noticed and appreciated.</p> <h2>Consider the Appropriateness</h2> <p>Not only is being specific important, but choosing the right words can also make a world of difference. Always make sure that the compliments you are giving aren&rsquo;t backhanded or gender-specific. Comments about a coworker's appearance can easily tread into dangerous waters; it's always important to consider the setting and the environment for the compliment.</p> <h2>Remain Humble</h2> <p>A compliment is intended to benefit the person who receives it. Once you give someone a compliment, don&rsquo;t repeat yourself until you receive a &ldquo;thank you.&rdquo; Simply give your compliment and politely carry on with your other tasks.</p> <h2>Be Yourself</h2> <p>You don&rsquo;t need to put on a big show to give a compliment. &nbsp;All you need to do is be yourself and deliver your compliment in a polite and efficient manner. Giving a compliment without having to become a different person will also make the compliment more sincere.</p> <p>Delivering great compliments will not only make you feel good, but it will also help brighten the day of others.&nbsp;In a world where everyone seems to always be facing a computer, TV, or phone screen, take the time to let those around you know about the exceptional things they are doing by telling them face to face.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chris-birk">Chris Birk</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/youre-doing-it-wrong-moron-5-tips-for-giving-better-compliments">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-ways-to-say-thanks">25 Ways to Say Thanks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/gratitude-and-frugality">Gratitude and Frugality</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-one-word-you-need-to-start-using-today-to-have-a-better-life">The One Word You Need to Start Using Today to Have a Better Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-win-an-argument">How to Win an Argument</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-organizations-that-need-your-help-during-christmas">7 Organizations That Need Your Help During Christmas</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development appreciation talking thankfulness Thu, 27 Jan 2011 13:36:12 +0000 Chris Birk 484123 at http://www.wisebread.com Giving Thanks For The Dollar http://www.wisebread.com/giving-thanks-for-the-dollar <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/giving-thanks-for-the-dollar" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000004978711XSmall.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="169" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Today I woke up with the question, &ldquo;What can I get for $1 today in the U.S.?&rdquo; It doesn&rsquo;t seem like much, but it&rsquo;s so much more than many people have right now. Like the man down the street who sits on the corner every weekday with a sign that says, &ldquo;Need Food.&rdquo; The sign has changed over the past six months. When I first spotted him, his sign said, &ldquo;Out of Work. Need Money.&rdquo; Now, as the economy has gotten worse and jobs have gotten scarcer, he just needs the basics. Food. Water. Maybe shelter. I&rsquo;m not sure he even has that. It looks like he&rsquo;s living out of his backpack. For that man, a dollar could mean the difference between eating today or not. For people living in developing countries, a buck can mean two or three meals for an entire family.</p> <p>Still, in the Western world, a single dollar can still buy more than we think. For instance, it can buy:</p> <ul> <li>A cup of steaming hot tea at the independent coffee shop down the street and the chance to build community with a small business owner.</li> <li>A couple of bananas at the fruit and veggie stand and an opportunity to support a local farmer.</li> <li>A single card at the dollar store and a way to let someone I love know how much I love them.</li> <li>A pen and a small notebook so I can jot my thoughts down as I stroll down the street.</li> <li>A single carnation at the grocery store and a way to brighten someone&rsquo;s day.</li> <li>A small bag of yogurt-covered pretzels from the bulk foods section at Whole Foods.</li> <li>A copy of <em>Real Change</em>, the newspaper for and by homeless people in Seattle.</li> </ul> <p>These seem like minor things, but the fact that I have them available to me in my local neighborhood seems major compared to what&rsquo;s available in other places. It makes me thankful that I was born in a country that offers such luxuries and that I can enjoy them for so little, relatively speaking. Of course, the things that mean the most don&rsquo;t cost a dime:</p> <ul> <li>An evening hanging out with my friends.</li> <li>A walk in the woods.</li> <li>A hug from someone I love.</li> <li>Laughing so hard my sides hurt.</li> <li>A bicycle ride through the neighborhood.</li> <li>An email message from a friend.</li> <li>A moment of quiet found during a meditation.</li> <li>A meaningful conversation with someone I just bumped into.</li> </ul> <p>Today I feel gratitude that I have that dollar. Maybe it&rsquo;s the season or maybe it&rsquo;s being in the U.S. Maybe it&rsquo;s both. In a world that seems so often filled with anger, frustration and fear, it feels good to know what to value and to feel grateful for what I have. So now, in this moment, I&rsquo;m taking the time to say thanks.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sasha-a-rae">Sasha A. Rae</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/giving-thanks-for-the-dollar">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-important-lessons-frugal-parents-teach-their-children">7 Important Lessons Frugal Parents Teach Their Children</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/gratitude-and-frugality">Gratitude and Frugality</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-poor-folks-have-better-crap-than-you">When poor folks have better crap than you</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-new-things-to-do-today">25 New Things to Do Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-your-body-sabotages-your-money">3 Ways Your Body Sabotages Your Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle gratitude one dollar thankfulness Thu, 26 Nov 2009 14:00:02 +0000 Sasha A. Rae 3896 at http://www.wisebread.com