Discover more from America 2.0 (by Gary Sheng)
How To Express Gratitude
People want to be appreciated for what they choose to consciously create in the world. So, show that you see them and appreciate their unique creativity.
I've now been in Montenegro now for eight weeks as part of a pop-up city experiment called Zuzalu.
It has been surreal. I've learned and grown so much, connected with countless people, and had unforgettable experiences.
I now understand better what I’m good at, what I want to pursue, even where I want to live. This profound experience has been made possible thanks to the hard work of dozens, if not hundreds, of people.
At the highest form of gratitude, one could argue that everyone, everywhere played some part in making this moment possible. If we subscribe to the idea of the butterfly effect, which I personally do, any number of circumstances could have prevented this from happening. So, I am deeply grateful.
On the note of gratitude, I've been pondering the best way to show gratitude to people. It's a subject that could fill a whole book, but I want to use this blog post as an opportunity to share a principle that I've come to believe in: showing gratitude to people in a way that recognizes the effort they've put into their creations.
For instance, if you want to show gratitude to a recording artist, let them know that you appreciate how their tunes bring a special kind of magic to the world. Tell them how their music has made your life tangibly better.
When you're conversing with a community builder, emphasize your admiration for the unique vibe they're nurturing in the group.
If you're discussing ideas with a philosopher, tell them how their thoughts have opened up new horizons for humanity.
In a meeting with a teacher, highlight their exceptional communication skills and how their enthusiasm for the subject is genuinely changing lives.
When interacting with a parent who genuinely invests in parenting, and if they're doing a good job, acknowledge it. Show that you're aware of their positive influence.
When talking to a weightlifter, mention your admiration for their dedication at the gym.
If you want to show gratitude towards a waiter, express the joy they've brought into your life through their service at the restaurant.
In a conversation with an event planner, discuss the joy their events have brought to your life, and how the experience of a particular place wouldn't have been the same without their contribution.
The essence of all this is that people appreciate being noticed for what they consciously put their effort into.
Different people have varying interests that they dedicate their time and energy to. That's precisely what you want to compliment, what you want to show gratitude towards.
As for showing gratitude towards me? I always cherish it when…
People mention how my "America 2.0 Substack" posts have inspired them to forge ahead in their lives.
People I introduce come back to me later and say “Wow, that was an amazing connection. Thank you for thinking of me.”
People who come to parties and other events I throw talk about how fun and/or life-changing the experience was.
It just brings me so much joy to know that at least some people notice how intentionally I try to generate more good in the world.
Anyway, thanks for reading this. I deeply appreciate your time and attention.
I hope this was helpful, and that you have a great day.