“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”  – Maya Angelou

I love this quote and I am sure many of you have read it too. There are many memories (good or bad) where we may not remember the instance clearly but for certain remember the way we felt in the moment.  

As I started to think more about the latter part of the quote  and wondered what should that feeling be that matters and makes a real difference. The answer I got to, was “Make Them Shine”. And the extra impactful version of this is “Make Them Shine A Tad Bit More” than what you think they deserve.

Human beings need social acknowledgment, we all need some external validation. By no means I am saying that should be the driving factor, but the truth is it feels good to get something done, be at the driving seat for it and get external validation for the same. And to be able to help someone experience it, is the best you can do for someone else. It works both professionally and personally.

Professional situations

Leave apart big presentations or meeting, even tiny mentions of yourself in an email giving you due credit or acknowledgement for your work goes such a long way. A senior giving you the opportunity to present or take the driving seat is a classic example of someone helping you “shine”. On the contrary when you see bosses, teammates stepping on you or cutting you in a meeting or not giving due credit – it’s not the nicest feeling. You got to learn to maneuver it, but no denying, that it doesn’t necessarily feel good. You will not remember the meeting, the email, but you will remember people who consistently helped you to shine and vice versa

Personal situations

This formula is the secret sauce of a many healthy relationships – be it with spouse, in-laws or kids. Speaking of one of the most-tricky ones – relationship with mother-in-laws, appreciating mothers in law (and a tad bit more than what you think they deserve) and in front of people they love and look up-to, has been such a win-win formula in my life. And let them own their unique battlegrounds – be it kitchen, or a certain cooking recipe or a certain task. Remember, everyone needs a ground to shine – doesn’t matter what or where it is. And in no time it becomes mutual – i.e. they start doing this too and reflecting back your own behavior. I am not perfect, and do make my share of mistakes, but this formula never really fails me.  

Same with kids, you appreciate them (and truly appreciate them from your heart) for one good task, and they feel so good, so happy and motivated to keep doing it and do it even better.

Now, the appreciation or making them shine can’t be fake. It has to be true otherwise it doesn’t do the trick. Sometimes that takes helping them find unique battlegrounds, where they can shine. And then you can do your bit to propel further by appreciating the legit amount and actually a tad-bit more than the legit amount.

So, now that you have read until here, do me a favor, go-out today and make someone shine 😊

  • Tell your mom in front of the entire family how amazing the food was today or how you appreciate her help day-in and day-out
  • Appreciate your team members in front of your clients or bosses for how instrumental they have been
  • Do not cut someone or step on someone while in a meeting only for the sake of grabbing limelight 
  • Tell your kid in front of his/her friends or cousins, what they have been good at and acknowledge their hard-work
  • Tell your spouse, how and where they have been contributing to your life in an instrumental way–  you don’t have to do this one in public 😊

And in case you are wondering, why do you make someone shine, when no-one’s doing that to you. The answer my friend is “As you sow, so shall you reap”. It always comes back – the timing and quantity of it might remain unknown but it always comes back.            

All my write-ups are about zooming-in on ordinary things in daily life that can lead to an extraordinary impact and may not be as applicable in extreme situations of life. I just share with the hope that it helps uplift from average to good or from good to great.

Once again, remember to make someone shine today and make this world a better place 😊

Until next time,

Shilpi

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