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How to Strengthen Your Relationships with the Concept of Pebbling

How to Strengthen Your Relationships with the Concept of Pebbling

Saturday, June 22, 2024

Maintaining strong relationships, both personal and professional, can be challenging when we are so busy. However, the concept of “pebbling,” which Adam Grant recently wrote about, offers a simple yet powerful approach to building and strengthening these connections. Pebbling refers to small, consistent actions that create significant impacts over time, much like tiny pebbles creating ripples in a pond. In this blog post, learn how you can use pebbling to enhance your relationships and provide practical examples for implementation.

The Power of Pebbling in Personal Relationships

The strength of our personal relationships often lies in the small, thoughtful gestures that demonstrate care and consideration. These actions, though seemingly minor, can significantly deepen connections by showing that you are thinking about the other person, even when you’re not physically together. Here are some ways to incorporate pebbling into your personal life:

  1. Send Thoughtful Messages:
    • Example: A simple “thinking of you” text or sharing a funny meme that reminded you of the person can brighten their day and show that you value your connection. I do this all the time with my friends and colleagues, and I hope it brings a smile to their faces.
  2. Celebrate Small Wins:
    • Example: Congratulate your friend on small achievements, like completing a workout or finishing a good book. These acknowledgments make them feel appreciated and supported.
  3. Remember Important Dates:
    • Example: Birthdays and anniversaries are obvious, but remembering smaller milestones, like the anniversary of a job start date or the day they moved to a new city, can be equally impactful.
  4. Show Up Consistently:
    • Example: Regularly check in with a quick call or visit. Consistency builds trust and reinforces the reliability of the relationship.

Pebbling in Professional Relationships

In the professional world, relationships are equally vital. They can lead to new opportunities, collaborations and a supportive network. Here’s how you can pebble effectively in a professional context:

  1. Express Gratitude:
    • Example: After a meeting or collaboration, send a thank-you email highlighting specific contributions that were particularly valuable. This shows appreciation and recognition.
  2. Share Relevant Articles or Resources:
    • Example: If you come across an article, book or webinar that might interest a colleague, share it with a note on why you thought of them. This helps maintain a connection and adds value to their professional growth.
  3. Celebrate Professional Milestones:
    • Example: Congratulate colleagues on work anniversaries, promotions or successful project completions. These gestures reinforce positive recognition and support.
  4. Offer Help and Support:
    • Example: Regularly offer assistance on projects or tasks, even if it’s just offering to be a sounding board. This builds a culture of mutual support and collaboration.

Practical Examples of Pebbling

To make pebbling a natural part of your routine, consider incorporating these specific actions:

  • Morning Message: Start your day by sending a quick message to a friend or colleague. It could be a simple “Good morning!” or a motivational quote.
  • Weekly Check-ins: Schedule regular check-ins with important contacts. A brief call or coffee catch-up can maintain and strengthen the connection.
  • Monthly Recognition: Create a habit of acknowledging one person each month for something they did well. This could be through a social media shoutout, an email, or a handwritten note.
  • Share Opportunities: Whenever you come across opportunities like job openings, conferences, or networking events, think about who in your network might benefit and share it with them.


Pebbling is a powerful approach to building and maintaining strong relationships. By integrating small, thoughtful actions into your daily routine, you can create meaningful connections that endure over time. Whether in your personal life or in your professional life, the ripples created by consistent pebbling can lead to deeper, more fulfilling relationships. Let me know what you think of the idea of pebbling!

Copyright © 2024, Stefanie M. Marrone. All Rights Reserved.