Every entrepreneur experiences anxiety at some point or another. Although there are a lot of great things about starting a company, the process is often very demanding and stress-inducing overall.
When you’re overwhelmed and worried about your to-do list, it’s easy to stop showing your appreciation for others. Fortunately, even the busiest of business owners can show their genuine appreciation more often with the following seven techniques:
1) Practice Random Acts of Kindness
In 1982, a woman named Anne Herbert coined the phrase “Practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty.” Today, there’s an entire foundation—The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation—dedicated to this philosophy.
Even when you’re stressed, you can take a moment and make someone else’s life better. Any act of kindness will make a difference, whether you wash a co-worker’s coffee mug without them asking or hold the door open for someone else.
2) Take Advantage of Affordable Tools
When you’re pressed for time, you cannot do all of the things you want to—like buying gifts for loved ones. Although personalized gifts are ideal, it’s impossible for busy entrepreneurs to create their own gifts 100 percent of the time …
If you are too swamped to shop for a gift, Occasion Station can help. Their professional, personal shoppers remind you of important dates and help you create meaningful gifts for them. They then ship the gift directly to you—or your loved one—so it’s on time for the special day.
3) Praise Them
Many business owners are familiar with the phrase “Praise in public, criticize in private.” When it comes to showing appreciation, though, you want to praise in public and private.
Every time you think about giving someone words of affirmation, remember that quality beats quantity. Thoughtfully commend someone on their hard work or tell them how much they mean to you. Even if you have a full schedule, you can clear three to five minutes to praise someone else.
4) Give Your Undivided Attention
You might not realize it, but at any given point, you’re probably juggling quite a few things in your head. In general, your ability to multi-task might help you as an entrepreneur, but it’s not helpful when it comes to showing your appreciation for others.
Even if you have a lot on your plate, take time to give others your undivided attention. Remove all distractions and try to be present when you’re with someone else.
5) Send an Email or Write a Letter
Even on your busiest day you can pick up your pen or sit at your computer and write some nice words to someone. If you’re really busy, write two to five sentences on a Post-It note. It won’t take long, and you’ll be glad that you did it.
6) Offer to Serve
Service is one of the most overlooked secrets to happiness. Simply asking someone what you can do for them and how you can be of help to them is a powerful and rewarding action.
Everyone you know has something they’re working on or want to improve, which is where you come in. Help a friend finish their home improvement project or offer to walk their dog. There’s a lot of simple service projects you can do for the people that matter in your life.
7) Dismiss the Need for Perfection
Many driven entrepreneurs struggle to accept flaws and mistakes. After all, they are under so much pressure that there’s seemingly no time for personal defects. If you’ve ever felt this way, you might be hurting your relationship with yourself and others.
Entrepreneurs aren’t perfect, which is why pivoting is one of the largest topics in the field. Furthermore, entrepreneur's acquaintances aren’t, and shouldn't be, perfect. Every time you hold yourself or another to unrealistic standards, you’ll miss out on the benefits of acknowledgment.
Making Time for Appreciation
At the end of a stressful day, the last thing you want to do is add another thing to your to-do list. That being said, you should buckle down and do one more thing with your day—perform an act of appreciation. Not only is this an altruistic thing to do, but it can actually help you feel less stressed out. The more you think about others, the less you think about yourself and your stress.