I wonder if young people understand what the expression “broken record” means. Or maybe they do as I hear there is a new interest in them, and they have been dubbed ” vinyls” by the younger crowd. A quick explanation in case you don’t know…
Back when music was listened to on records (or vinyls), it was possible to scratch the surface of the black disks causing a “skip” in the music which often resulted in the same few words being repeated over and over again. Sometimes the music would move on after repeating three or four times, but sometimes the needle reading the grooves of the vinyl disc would be stuck forever in an endless loop unless it was given a gentle nudge or lifted and placed beyond the problem area.
Please. Thank you. I’m sorry. Because of my condition, much must be done for me and I say those words so often that I sound like a broken record to myself. I grow tired of hearing my voice say them repeatedly. These pleasantries are common courtesy and it’s important to express kindness and appreciation, but in our house they are repeated so often that its possible they are not even noticed anymore.
Even outside the house, so many people kindly open doors and offer assistance that I feel the words “thank you” are overused and boring. I try to spice it up with variety. Especially when a young person helps me in some way, I want to encourage the kindness.
A friend from years ago left an impression on me by the way she could take any compliment directed toward her and reply with a compliment toward the person who gave the compliment. For instance, if someone said “you’re so nice”, she would answer with “you’re so kind to say that”. It impressed me how she easily and naturally returned kindness with kindness. I try to do the same, or at least utter a humble thank you; but with my concentration issues with background noise, sometimes the best I can offer is a nod and smile or even a blank stare.
Truthfully, there are days I wish I didn’t need extra help and don’t want to be someone’s good deed for the day; but on most days I have the ability to be grateful for every kind act and compliment directed toward me. The least I can do is return the kindness shown and hope to make a difference too. Instead of sounding like a broken record, I can use some creativity. So I made a list and I review it from time to time to refresh my memory.
Alternatives to “thank you” for a kind act:
Thanks for your help.
That sure was nice, thanks!
What a kind thing to do.
I appreciate your help.
How thoughtful, thank you.
I’m grateful – thanks.
You’re a star!
Thanks so much.
You’re very kind.
Much appreciated – thanks.
You’re so helpful.
That sure made things easier.
You’re such a helpful person.
How very considerate.
That was courteous – I appreciate it.
Alternatives to thank you in response to a compliment:
What a nice thing to say.
You sure know how to make someone feel good.
I needed that today, thanks.
You’re so nice.
How thoughtful of you to say that.
It’s just like you to say something so nice.
You’re very kind.
That’s encouraging to hear, thank you.
I appreciate your kindness.
You always have something nice to say.
You’re so kind to say that.
Alternatives to I’m Sorry
It was inconsiderate for me to do that.
Would you forgive me?
What was I thinking?
How can I make it right?
I’m sorry for how this affects/affected you.
What can be done to make it better?
If you start thinking you sound like a broken record, maybe there are some new ideas here for you to use to replace the repeated words. Or maybe you have ideas for me? There’s a comment area below and I’ll enjoy hearing what you have to say.
I think every good deed or kind act deserves to be acknowledged and appreciated. I believe that the actual words used are less important than the tone of voice and the smile of appreciation speaks for itself.
That’s very true Declan. Thanks for pointing it out.
This is an important thing to think about, when one is so often in the position of being helped in so many ways having MS or other illnesses can require. A smile, a genuine heartfelt smile can be enough sometimes, when life is hard and you feel it in your very marrow.
There are people out there who love to help, but even they can become jaded at times if their efforts aren’t at least acknowledged. Thank you are two words that should be there as needed, but you’re alternatives to these often said words are beautiful.
I really appreciate your comment. I think I automatically smile, but I’ll be watching myself to make sure I do.
Awesome post! Completely agree with your point. I have to say “thank you” so often, it becomes tiresome (strangers DO help A LOT, despite what some may say). Because I struggle to walk, a smile can be difficult to surface, but I do try to change the inflection of my voice to sound more appreciative of help. (That may seem odd, but it works!)
Such a valid point. With so much concentration on managing pain, compensating for the effects of medications and watching for obstacles in front of and surrounding us, there’s often little energy left to think of what to say or even smile. Still, we try.
i kept thinking of all the times i had to put a quarter on the tone arm to get past the skips. and how many skips just became part of the song. when i hear some songs now, on them there new-fangled cd things, i still hear the skip. thanks too for your suggestions for “thank you fatigue.” i say it all day long, how nice to switch to “you’re so kind.” thank…er…you’re so kind to post this!