« Reflection and gratitude at the close of 2007 | Main | Laila has decided that she will not be crippled by resentment. »

8 gifts of civility you can give this year

“Have patience with all things, but chiefly have patience with yourself. Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections but instantly set about remedying them - every day beginning the task anew.”
Saint Francis de Sales, French saint and bishop of Geneva (1567-1622)

You’ll not only give but receive using these gifts in the workplace and in your personal life.

1. The gift of listening
One of the greatest things you can do for another is actively listen. This means you really listen, no interrupting, no daydreaming, no planning your response, no multi-tasking, no jumping to conclusions. Think of the old adage you have one mouth and two ears; use them in that proportion. Listen.

2. The gift of acknowledgment
How many times do we ask for something or are just given something and do not acknowledge receipt? Acknowledge.

3. The gift of gratitude
Do you compliment others on work well done? Value their contributions? Write notes or express your thanks in person. Building up people builds organizational strength. Express your gratitude.

4. The gift of connection
People need to belong to thrive. Connectedness is a core requisite to learn, develop and interact. Look for opportunities to engage others in meaningful activities, have a voice, take responsibility for their actions and actively participate in civic discourse. Stay in touch with your network of personal friends and professional acquaintenances.

5. The gift of time
Volunteer to help others complete projects or respect their need for uninterrupted time. This gift is more valuable when you anticipate a request. Give time.

6. The gift of discipline
Confront reality. Instead of blaming others or denying that a problem exists, deal with facts. No complaining, no feeling sorry for yourself, no nasty comments, no screaming, no pessimistic predictions, no drama. Ask questions to learn and understand rather than questioning every action. Discipline yourself.

7. The gift of knowledge
Help others learn a new software program, suggest different ways to look at a problem, loan a book that you think will be helpful, mentor someone. People like challenges. You’ll probably learn too as you share knowledge.

8. The gift of excitement
Who can resist the person who is excited about searching for solutions rather than pointing out problems, who anticipates the future rather than focusing on the past and who is enthusiastic about what is going right rather than outlining what went wrong? Share the positive energy of excitement.

Laugh. Inspire. Enjoy.

What other gifts would you add?

Comments

Thanks, Lynette, for such a thoughtful start to the New Year. This is definitely going up on my cube wall!

You all probably realize I write about things I need to work on. Acknowledgment is the one I've been called on twice in recent months...so I'm trying to be better at that.

Excellent, excellent gifts to give to yourself and to others - whether they be family, friends, or co-workers! I need to work on each "gift" in my life, day by day. I need to work on my imperfections and quit making excuses!! This is the perfect time to begin!