Today I had the privilege of helping someone- in such a small way- accomplish a goal. Technically, I enjoyed myself enough that I feel like I probably received as much or more than I gave. And in the process, we encountered several people on whom I was determined to practice an ongoing quest… to be kind enough to someone that I can literally see the transformation of their day in the few moments I am with them.
I start with a smile. Far too few of us smile enough. I’m guilty of that, and so I work at it. Then I begin by asking how they are doing or how their day is going. Their story is important, and they need someone to tell. Once we have dealt with the business at hand, I try to be sure to thank them for helping me. They think they’re just doing their job, but their job helped me, and so I try to express adequate appreciation. It is so fun to see if I can be genuine and kind enough to boost someone else emotionally and mentally in their day.
The first person we encountered did not respond to my efforts kindly. She was brusk, beyond business-like, almost rude. I could have been tempted to give up on the quest today, but I decided she wasn’t the only person in the world whose day needed to be brightened. So, I smiled, and spoke kindly, and shared appreciation.
Guess what happened… That’s right, people’s eyes brightened… smiles spread across their face… and by the time our few moments were done, they looked like their load was lighter.
In some ways, it has become a challenge for me. But it’s really a joy. I know I appreciate it when someone treats me like that. And it seems like I read somewhere that my Role Model said we should treat others the way we want to be treated. Worked for Him. Works for me. It’ll work for you.
And if on some occasion, someone doesn’t reciprocate, don’t give up. Stay on the quest!