Does it ever occur to you how vital our words are in shaping lives? Words can make someone feel valued, heard, connected, or understood. No one can argue the value of well-chosen words when it comes to patient encounters, but what about co-worker or leader-to-staff encounters?
I recently read an article about the most memorable compliments people have ever received. As I read through the litany of examples, it struck me that not one of the compliments was paid in a public forum but rather in a one-to-one conversation. Each example was generated during a casual conversation rather than a pre-planned one, such as a performance review. And every one of them had life-changing results because the recipient gained valuable insight into his or her effect on others.
Reading this article made me think about all the wonderful people working in healthcare settings each day quietly going about their work with care and compassion and who touch the lives of patients and co-workers in so many ways yet may not have any idea of the real impact they are making. My advice is that you look around for examples of compassion and kindness and tell the person or persons just how they make a difference. Who knows, you might just cause that person to walk a little taller, smile a bit more, or take your words with them for the rest of their life.