Have you seen those commercials (I think for insurance? It’s been a long time since I saw a real commercial) when people see someone do a random act of kindness for a stranger and then they do something nice for a stranger? I know you have.
Now I know every single one of my readers is a kind, loving, wonderful person. I’ve read all of your blogs at one point or other (cause I love you all) and know that while some of you may be snarky (and I love you for it! Some days you just need some good snark), you are each and every one of you generous, funny, and amazing in your own special way. I also know that you are kind. You may not think so, but I know you are. I’ve been thinking about kindness lately. I am, according to my friends, generally a kind person. I try to be kind and polite to everyone. I don’t always succeed, but I do try. I realized the other day though that I could be more kind. Kind to strangers. I try, I really do, but some days I’m tired and irritable and just don’t feel like it. BUT! But, what if that grumpy guy in line behind me is having a really bad day too and once small act of kindness on my part might make it a little better? If I’m in a store with a trolley full of stuff and the person behind me has only one or two items, I almost always let them go ahead of me. This really seems to put the Germans off kilter. They look at me like I’m crazy, but always smile and thank me as they zip ahead of me. Oddly enough, it makes me kind of happy too.
Has a stranger ever done anything nice to you for no reason? Maybe they let you jump ahead in line when you had only a few items or picked up something you dropped and returned it to you. Maybe they just smiled at you when you were feeling down. Think how that made you feel. Could you pass it on?
I’m going to endeavor to try to be more kind to strangers as a general rule. I’m asking all of you to try to do the same. Think of it as a social experiment. Try it for one full day. Be as nice as possible, even if you don’t feel like it. Smile at people. Let them cut in line. Compliment someone. Hold a door open for a harried mom trying to wrangle her 3 overly tired children. Look the cashier in the eye and tell them they’re doing a good job. See how it makes them feel. See how it makes you feel. I don’t expect some bazaar timeline circle of paying it forward, but I think you’ll see a difference in others and yourself. If you do, please tell me how it went and how it felt. But please, don’t stop the snark on the blogs.