Have you ever had someone surprise you with just the right thing at just the right time and wished you had a gift for being thoughtful? It really isn’t so difficult when you understand a few basic ideas. It is usually the small things that make the biggest difference to someone. Here are a few simple pointers.
Act on Your Impulses
When it comes to knowing when someone needs a lift, follow your gut. Most people have great instincts about such things but tend to push the thought down because they are busy, think they might be intruding or that their attention may be unwanted. In reality, most people are grateful to know they are thought well of and cared about enough for you to make the effort.
While doing something is better than doing nothing, it is more meaningful if you have considered their interests or needs and try to find something they will really enjoy. Choose a special book for a bibliophile, one of those delicious chocolate candy bouquets for someone with a sweet tooth, or a new piece for a collection.
Give Your Time
A gift is not the only way to show you care. Spend some time with the person. Visit them at home, take them for a drive, or go to lunch. Even a simple phone call can turn a person’s life around, if it is made with the goal of encouraging and validating the person’s feelings.
If someone has a birthday or anniversary, celebrate it – even if it’s just a simple handwritten note. Congratulate them on promotions or other important milestones in their life. If they are a widow or widower, remember them on the birth and death dates of the deceased. If it is important to your friend, it should be important to you.
Remember, when all is said and done, the best things are the ones that say, “I thought of you today.” Before long, being thoughtful will become second nature.