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Showing Gratitude to Strangers When Traveling for Business


Note: although travel as we know it is on hiatus due to COVID-19, these kind ways of interacting with others are still applicable. Remember them when travel gets going again, but also think of them as you travel through your day now, which I bet feels like a foreign land! Simple trips to the grocery store are now very very odd.

Though travel is often stressful, showing gratitude instead of irritation will improve your trip satisfaction. Simple acts of kindness and showing thanks also enhances the lives of the strangers around you.

In this article, we'll take a closer look at three aspects:

  • Why you need to be grateful for the strangers you meet during your travels.

  • How to be grateful when everything is going wrong with your trip.

  • Examples of stressful travel situations and where instead of responding with anger, you find ways to show gratitude.

Keep reading to learn more about the science of gratitude and how it affects you and those you meet, even when traveling for business.

Why Showing Gratitude to Strangers Is Important

If you're a business person who must travel often, you've no doubt experienced your fair share of stress.

In times like this, practicing gratitude instead of exploding with anger is beneficial to you and those around you. Anger brings health risks for you and can cause strangers to feel intimidated and upset. Often the stressful situation, like a traffic jam on the way to make your flight, is out of anyone's control.

Everyone is doing their best, particularly those in publicly-facing customer service positions. Showing gratitude for a person's services might be the kind words they needed to hear to make it through a tough workday.

There are many ways to show gratitude when everything about your business trip is going wrong. The important thing to remember is sincerity. Maintaining a positive mindset and will help you choose gratitude when everything seems to be going against you.

Examples of Showing Gratitude Instead of Anger

Here are a few examples of where you can show gratitude and kindness instead of anger in situations where you may not have any control:

  • With the traffic congested, you're running late for your flight. Instead of taking your frustration out on the taxi/Uber driver, joke with them about the situation to put them at ease.

  • You barely make it to the airport on time. Now you set off the detector and get pulled aside by a TSA agent. Instead of getting angry with them, which they deal with all the time, compliment them for their devotion to the job.

  • You arrive at your hotel, but the hotel attendant at the front desk can't find your reservation. Instead of huffing and puffing about your booking being completed weeks in advance, keep a level head and provide any information that'll help verify your reservation. Once the matter is solved, speak with hotel management and compliment the attendant on their professional manner under stress.

Be Kind and Make the World a Better Place

Showing gratitude where you can, when you’re in a stressful situations is always the best practice. It will help to improve the moods of those around you, and will leave a favourable impression of yourself on others.

Michele Bailey is president and CEO of Blazing Agency and My Big Idea®. These two lines of business work congruently to support her clients’ success.


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