Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Do No Harm

That’s my basic philosophy of life now. Sadly it hasn’t always been but age and circumstances have mellowed me. Not that I ever deliberately went out of my way to hurt anyone but I was a teenage girl and we all know how they get at times.

Anyway, do no harm. Generally a good way to live I think. But why not take it a step farther? Let’s add one more thing that is so incredibly effortless I find it unbelievable that it’s not the norm for many of those I encounter on a daily basis. It really is very simple. Ready? Be kind.

That’s it. Seriously. Just be kind. Meet the eyes of those who cross your path, those who look at you instead of around you, and smile. Say or nod hello. If it’s an individual that you are spending a few minutes with for any reason start out with a polite “How are you today?” and mean it. Listen to their response. If the situation of your meeting calls for it say please, thank you and you’re welcome. Come on. It takes very little extra time so why not try it? Now don’t misunderstand. I’m not suggesting you interrupt routines and spend serious time conversing with everyone you see. Nope, that’s not my intent at all. Simply be kind.

What set this off? I had a reality check recently that got me thinking. You see, I did say hello to someone and I did ask how she was, not really expecting a real answer at the time. But I sure got one. The person I was speaking with started to cry. Apparently I have a nice voice and a caring expression. It had been so long since she had anyone sincerely asked after her that it was somewhat overwhelming. Hm, yes, I’ve had times when I could relate to that. Probably not in the same manner as she’s going through but similar enough to understand her reaction.

Which brings me to my point. No matter what else is going on, would it kill any of us to take a few seconds and show each other some courtesy? Would it really hurt to slow down and spend a moment being interested in each other as fellow human beings? Would it be such a bad thing to take a deep breath and share a tiny bit of real contact with others throughout our days? Personally, I think we would all benefit from some honest interaction now and then. Let’s give it a try.

3 comments:

Amarinda Jones said...

You are absolutely right but unfortunately as human beings we forget about other people - myself included. Good blog

Kelly Kirch said...

Wise words from a wise woman.

Anny Cook said...

Sort of along the lines of pay if forward. Do something BEFORE someone does something for you...even just a smile.