Pour Your Sugar On Me

February 22, 2015

By: Madison Romney

It is -22 degrees outside and I am bundled from head to toe, trudging through the hallways of Ross, hoping to break a sweat before I brace the biting Michigan air. As I mentally prepare myself to go out into the “great” outdoors, I notice a long line coming from a student led station by the staircase. I slow my pace and an ear-to-ear grin consumes my face as I recognize my kind +LAB friends buzzing with energy. I proudly stand behind 10 people all excitedly waiting to send a +gram.

The dreary Michigan winter and the inherently fast-paced culture at Ross can make it hard to take time to think about the wonderful people that surround us. This winter, the +LAB “Pour your Sugar on Me” team makes it simple—they facilitate the giving and receiving of +grams (grams of gratitude) while we focus on our message to those who have taught us, supported us, and inspired us. In the past 3 weeks, this team has generated immense positivity through their gratitude intervention—sending over 600 grams so far!—allowing us to pour a little appreciative sweetness on our peers and professors during this chilling season.

The month of February is filled with love, friendship, and compassion— what better way to show someone you care than writing a hand-written note of gratitude? Expressing thanks generates enduring effects for both the giver and the receiver, creating stronger high quality connections and infusing relationships with meaning. People who consistently display gratitude are happier, healthier, more energetic and forgiving. As the recent sender of a +gram, I can vouch for this. After writing my +gram, I couldn’t stop smiling and even had a spunk to my step as I walked home through the biting cold.

Gratitude not only has strong implications for individual thriving but for organizational success as well. Kim Cameron, one of our founders of the Center for Positive Organization, has discovered that implementing virtuousness interventions (which include gratitude) enhance organizational creativity, productivity, employee retention, and profitability. This has held true at Ross with the +gram initiative. Jessica, a member of the +gram team mentioned “No one is telling people they have to participate or send a +gram, however I’ve observed people come to the table multiple times to send stacks of +grams to multiple people. That means that once you start giving thanks, you can’t stop!

Because demonstrating gratitude will boost positivity at Ross and will bring immense health and relationship benefits for senders and receivers, we need to make gratitude part of our daily activities. Share gratitude everyday. Send a +gram.