How to make people feel better: Tips to cheer people up
How to make people feel better? The answer to this lies in the simplicities of human behavior and interaction. Relationship breakups, fights, failing in exams, petty neighborhood quarrels, legal hassles, financial loss, falling sick, being fired – All these seemingly complex problems of life can easily be addressed by a friend, partner or a family member willing to extend a helping hand. If you know someone who is feeling sad, down, depressed, glum or heartbroken, use these tips to cheer people up.
1) Behave as if you genuinely care
Use words, gestures and actions to express your care and concern for the people you are trying to cheer up. If you want to make a difference, pull all the stops to do so. Halfhearted efforts are insignificant when it comes to lifting someone's morale.
For example, you can make a phone call and offer your sympathies, or you can rock up at someone's doorstep with a bunch of flowers, a cheerful smile and a shoulder to lean on. The difference between merely feeling sympathetic, and actually doing things that show sympathy, is what separates the formalities from genuine concern.
2) Listen to people's problems, talk less
A fix that anyone and everyone who is feeling down and sad need, is a patient ear. Simple questions like 'How are you doing now?', 'What is bothering you?' or ' Tell me what is going through your mind right now' are all it takes to let someone know that you are willing to listen to their problems.
Sometimes people just need to rant and a patient pair of ears make more difference than a quick tongue giving out irrelevant pieces of advice. Listen without being judgmental and allow people to vent out stress and anger.
3) Give reassurance and be less cynical
The last thing that people under stress want to hear is an argument or a counter opinion. Cynical behavior can result in more frustration and may very well do the exact opposite of cheering someone up.
For example, if a close friend has failed to get into a college he dreamed of studying at, reassure him with lines like 'This is not the end of the world. You can try for another college which is much better than this one' or 'Look at the bright side, this way you won't be too far from me'.
Reassure your friend, make him feel better and only once he is out of the blues, start talking about the repercussions and how the situation can be fixed.
4) Offer relevant, helpful advice
Irrelevant and impractical advice may push someone who is feeling sad, deeper into the gallows of sadness and depression. If you really want to help someone by giving advice, choose your words carefully and give advice that is practical and relevant.
Refrain from using cliché lines like 'You should have listened to me in the first place' or 'I told you so'. Offer helpful advice, not irrelevant ramblings.
5) Offer unconditional help
If you want to help, whether emotionally, mentally, physically or financially, offer it unconditionally. Don't tie your offer down with an expectation of something that you would want in return. Make it very clear from the word go, that your help is absolutely unconditional and that the person you are helping will not be obliged or indebted to you in any way.
By making it clear that your help has no strings attached, it will make people feel more comfortable in accepting your helping hand. Additionally, it will make it easier for you to judge the type and amount of help you want to offer.
6) Give compliments and shower praise
Compliments for girls and guys alike, are quick fixes to making people feel better and giving them something to smile about. Compliments can passively reinstate confidence and self esteem in the minds of people who have gone through a humiliating experience.
For example, if your bff has been dumped, say something along the lines of 'You are the prettiest girl I have ever known. It is his loss that he broke up with you' or 'You are one of the most intelligent, skilled and talented person I know. You will get a new job in no time'.
7) Embrace with a hug
Ever wonder why Free Hugs are so popular? That's because a hug is a sign of affection, support, love and many other things all built into one warm human gesture. If your friend, partner or parent is feeling sad or depressed, keep giving randomly timed hugs to make them feel better.
8) Follow up every day to show concern and support
Making people feel better is just not only about stepping in at the right time and giving emotional and psychological support. If you really care, follow up with text messages, phone calls and emails to let them know that your support is not one-off.
Keep following up with questions like 'Are you feeling better?' is a good way to ignite a supportive conversation. Continue offering morale boosters and hold their hands, not literally, until they are back on their own feet and back to their old radiant self.
9) Take people out for a meal
Delicious food is considered by many as one of the most pleasurable and comforting feelings. If you know someone who is going through a rough time and you want to cheer them up, go for a meal at a nice restaurant together.
Let them know upfront that you will be treating and all they have to do is put on their best outfit, tag along and enjoy a nice meal. Quiet outings like these, as opposed to the blaring dance floor of a club, go a long way in making people feel better because your interaction with them is more personal.
10) Buy a present or a gift
It is no secret that presents, gifts and goodies are mood enhancers. If you share a really close bond with the person you are trying to cheer up, buy a present for him/her.
Depending on your relationship with the person and the intensity of the situation, a gift can be something as simple as a box of chocolates to something as extravagant as tickets for a weekend in Las Vegas.