Tag Archives: gratitude

Day 28: Write a Letter Praising an Employee

“A pessimist, they say, sees a glass as being half empty; an optimist sees the same glass as half full. But a giving person sees a glass of water and start looking for someone who might be thirsty.” –G. Donald Gale


There is a man that works at the local grocery store who, if it were up to me, would win employee-of-the-month twelve times a year. He’s very friendly, has a positive attitude, engages with the customers, and makes entering the store so enjoyable that my husband and I have a made a point of doing the bulk of our shopping there.

As someone who has held multiple customer service type jobs, I know acting this way isn’t always an easy task. Customers can be rude, working conditions are often far from ideal, and the pay tends to be low. Putting on a friendly smile, checking your personal problems at the door, and representing your company in the best light possible can be challenging. There are so many excuses for phoning it in.

Despite this, Mr. Should Be Employee of the Month never does. He greets each customer with a smile, inquires about their day, and then offers his assistance. He goes above and beyond the call of duty, and I wanted to make sure he received some recognition for that. I decided to write the management at the store at let them know how valuable of an employee he is to them.

How many times have you received great service but didn’t stop to truly thank the person providing it? Maybe you expected it? Maybe you were too busy to notice? Or maybe you wanted to show your appreciation but didn’t really know how?

Writing this letter was such a simple way to show both that employee and the company my gratitude for his service. It was a small way for him to get the recognition he deserves.

They say kindness begets kindness. Well in this case, it couldn’t be more true

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Day 21: Treat our Firefighters with Donuts and Bagels

“The everyday kindness of the back roads more than makes up for the acts of greed in the headlines.” –Charles Kuralt


Thankfully, I have never personally needed the assistance of our local fire department. But that doesn’t mean I don’t see the benefit in all that they do. Beyond just fighting fires, they respond to medical emergencies, provide support during a crisis, participate in community outreach programs, and serve as public figures representing strength, integrity, dedication, and general badassness. No wonder most little kids idolize them.

Something you may not know is that out of the 1,148,000 men and woman that serve as firefighters, about 812,000 are volunteers. Volunteers! That means they carry out all of the aforementioned duties for no compensation whatsoever. They put their lives at risk to help others because they believe it is the right thing to do. Because they believe in protecting the greater good. Talk about an act of kindness.

I wanted to show my gratitude for our local firefighters so I decided to stop by the station and surprise them with breakfast treats. First thing in the morning Oliver and I ran out and bought a dozen donuts from the grocery store; then we went to Panera where we purchased a dozen bagels and cream cheese. I wrote a note of thanks and attached it to the goodies.

When we arrived at the station everyone was in motion. I didn’t want to interrupt what might be an emergency response underway so I crept in the back and handed the treats to an employee sitting off to the side. He told everyone was busy running through a drill (phew no real emergency), and they would be very excited about the treats when they were finished. I thanked the man and left.

My random act of kindness may be small in comparison to the kindness these people extend everyday on the job, but it’s a start. To the men and women that give so much to the community, my sincerest thanks.


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Day 16: Deliver treats to the Maternity Nurses

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, and honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” –Leo Buscagalia


When you have a baby, most people are surprised by the fact that their primary doctor is not present throughout the whole labor. In fact, your primary doctor is often not present throughout much of the delivery. He or she shows up at the very end, catches the baby, hands it off to a nurse, and then deals with any serious complications that might arise.

Throughout my 23 hours of labor, my doctor was in the room with me for all of 30 minutes. The rest of the time, it was up to my husband and the nurses to keep me calm, keep my morale up, and fetch ice chips when I started to complain about how dry my mouth felt.

The nurses I worked with did a great job of treating me with respect and dignity. They did a great job of listening to my concerns and providing me with honest answers in a nonpatronizing tone. When I was tired and wanted to give up, they encouraged me to just hold on a little bit longer. When I desperately needed some sleep, they made feel less guilty about handing my newborn off for a few hours so I could get some rest.

These nurses are the unsung heroes of the hospital. They work long shifts, do the least desirable of tasks, and unlike the doctors who show up at only the most critical of moments, they are with their patients day-in and day-out. They deserve some praise.

When Oliver was born I never got a chance to properly thank all the nurses that assisted me. Since I’m a “better late than never” kind of person, I decided to use my random acts of kindness project as the perfect excuse to show them my appreciation. I heard through the grapevine that individually wrapped edible gifts are always a hit so in the spirit of the Halloween season I purchased a large bag of candy. I dumped it into a pail adorned with my RAOK sticker and then included a message of thanks. I figure sine they helped deliver my baby, the least I can do is deliver them a gift of gratitude.

I’d be interested to know if any nurses out there have seen this done and how it was received. Was candy a good choice? Comment below!


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