All material in this blog (written/audio/visual) is copyrighted. Do not duplicate without explicit consent from the author.

07 April 2009

You're Alive! Do Something!

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.
-- Aesop (620 BC - 560 BC)

Everyday I try to fully engage myself in my interactions with people. I learned that from my husband, Warren. The simplest exchange can really bring sunshine to somebody's day.

Like lets say that you are in line to buy a coffee. You wait forever dreaming of your rich foamy latte made with Stumptown beans. The person ahead of you is taking forever to decide on their order. Finally, it's your turn. You step up to the counter with a chip on your shoulder. At this point, you have a choice. You can monotonously order, give your money to the cashier, offer up a half-assed thank you and walk away. Come on, you know you do this. I did. But Warren never does. He greets the cashier with a big smile and a hearty good morning. He then comments on something like the cool necklace they are wearing or the butt-rocker shirt back from our younger days the barista is wearing. Or he says this is the coolest song he's heard -what CD are they playing today? Then he orders his drink, all the meanwhile being kind and continuing the conversation. When he leaves the line to wait to pick up his coffee drink, he leaves one person a lot happier than they were just moments before. And you know what? They remember him. The next time he comes in, the acknowledge him right away. This time they chat him up. Then before you know it, we walk into the coffee shop into another long line, they see us come in and they have our drinks ready before we even order.

That's what I'm sayin to ya. You're alive! Act Alive!

So, I see this at work a lot. I come into contact with a lot of people. I'd say most of them are lost in their thoughts or caught up in the day to day drudgery. But I don't allow that when we come into contact. Through smiling, encouraging words, and a sense of humor, I can transform them into happy humans again. I'm not saying that I butter them up, I just try to remember something about them to ask them about. It's more like sincere acknowledgements. Even if I don't have time to chat, I send a high wave in the air along with a smile. I'm telling you it works. The next time they see me, they are a bit more alive. They react. They enjoy it when they run into me.

I never chat too much for I am not a social chatter at work although I am with my friends and family. I'm much too shy for that at work. But my exchanges with people are enough to infect them with a little happiness, enough to make them crack a smile, and enough for them to spread a little of it to the next person. That's all I ask. You're Alive! Do Something! Pull your shoulders back. Hold your head up higher. Smile! Make every moment mean something. Live!

1 comment: