When you speak, be uplifting to those around you. The Bible tells us how powerful our words can be. You can brighten up someone’s day just by paying him or her an honest and sincere compliment, such as, “You really look beautiful in that outfit,” “That last project you handed in was exceptional,” or “Thank you for taking the time to cook today – that was a delicious meal.”
Represent a joyful disposition
People take notice when they see someone who is joyful and polite, no matter what task they are doing or what situation they are in. Share your happiness with others by saying something as simple as “Hello,” “Please,” and “Thank You.”
Show sincere and appropriate affection
You can show warmth and fondness for friends and family by giving hugs, kisses, pats on the back, or holding hands. Sometimes, no words need to be spoken during certain situations. Human touch, such as resting your hand on someone’s shoulder, says, “I care and I am here for you.”
Offer a favor
We all have the opportunity every day to lend someone a helping hand and do something kind for those around us. Through performing acts of kindness, we have the ability to show the love of Christ to a person in need. It could be something as simple as giving a ride to someone who doesn’t have transportation, or helping an elderly person put up their hurricane shutters. If we unselfishly make ourselves available, we will discover opportunities are around us daily.
The written word
Writing down a few short words or sentences can mean the world to someone, and it is not quickly forgotten. Slip a small note into your child’s lunchbox, or your spouse’s wallet, letting them know how thankful you are for them. Send your parents, friends, or coworker a handwritten note that expresses the joy they bring into your life. Words that truly come from the heart have the ability to change someone’s life.
Sometimes a person just needs someone to take the time to listen. Steps to being a good listener involve making eye contact, not judging the person speaking, being patient, and not interrupting or planning a response while they are speaking. Not everyone is looking for a response; sometimes a person just wants to be heard. If in fact they do want a response, be loving with your reply, and never mock what the person has shared with you.
This may seem like a strange gift at first, but with the way life can become so hectic, a little solitude may be the perfect gift. Be sensitive to the person who is seeking time away from this world. You can offer to take the kids for a few hours, giving the other person time to take a nap or read a book. If you know someone who is a caregiver, offer a couple hours of your time so that he or she can take a break – that can be a gift that no amount of money can buy.
Share a good laugh
Laughter makes us feel good, and its physiological effects on the body can be amazing. Laughing with a spouse, friend or family member can come in handy, whether someone is dealing with an illness, or coping with daily stress from a job or personal relationship. You can even send someone a funny article or joke to brighten up their day!
It doesn’t cost a penny to be a true friend, and friendships can last a lifetime. Tips for being a great friend include being honest, loyal and respectful. Pitch in during times of crisis, and offer reassurance. Be loving with your words, and don’t be selfish. And remember to be an example to your friend by showing the love of Christ in all you say and do.