“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view… Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.”
- Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird
Saturday morning I was enjoying one of my favorite past times, grocery shopping at the Whole Foods. As you can imagine with all the cooking we do Gatsby and I had quite the cart full. When I began to unload my first item at checkout, a woman came up behind me and started unloading her cart onto the conveyor belt without even putting up a divider. I nicely said that I had a lot of groceries and think it would be best if she waited until I was finished. She silently rolled her eyes at me and continued to unload her entire cart until I had no where to put my stuff! I was flabbergasted!! This was not proper grocery store etiquette, not to mention she was clearly in a hurry and from a practical standpoint it was going to take me a lot longer to checkout since I had to hand every item to the cashier, who smiled and said not to worry. I decided to let it go because I was not going to allow this stranger to ruin my day, and after all, maybe hers wasn’t going so well. How many of you have a story like mine??
Over the past few weeks I have continuously had the same conversation with my family and friends. As a consensus we have all observed that people are just not as kind and considerate as they used to be. I’m not sure if it’s simply that we’re in the age of technology where everything is happening at lightning speed and you can literally order anything on your iPhone in a matter of seconds, not to mention secure a date for Saturday night with a simple swipe, no conversation necessary. But why does it seem that everyone’s online presence or what’s happening with their favorite celebrity comes before building and fostering all the REAL relationships in our lives. Remember the days when you used to wait in line at the Starbucks and have actual conversations with fellow patrons. Now everyone is laser glued to their devices, completely oblivious to everyone around them. Hey trust me I’m guilty of all this too, but shouldn’t we make a better effort not to be. Here’s some food for thought…
CHIVALRY is not dead! Holding the door for someone, saying please and thank you, helping your elderly neighbor carry her groceries…all simple things that will literally brighten up someone’s day.
Your word is GOLDEN. Say what you mean, do what you say and follow through. Obviously we all have things come up in our lives that are beyond our control, but show up for people and stay in touch. Life shouldn’t be all about YOU or you’ll be missing out on the real jewels: time spent with family and friends, laughter, love, happiness…things money cannot buy.
COMMUNICATE!! Call the people important to you and have an actual conversation from time to time. It will be beyond appreciated and lots of things get misinterpreted over text message and email. And put your phone away at meals; it won’t kill you to stay off Facebook for an hour. Further, if you want to ask someone on a date call them boys and girls and don’t EVER end a relationship over text message or even worse pull a disappearing act. We all know things don’t always work out and it’s difficult to injure someone’s feelings, but when someone invests in YOU, you owe them the common courtesy of a conversation.
Be POSITIVE! Put positive energy out into the world whether in person or online. We see more than our share of ugly things in the news. Be someone that adds value to other people’s lives and builds them up.
At the end of the day just treat people how you want to be treated and make time for the things that really matter in life. And never forget that the simplest act of holding the elevator door for someone or saying “good morning” is just as important as the big things we do and can literally change someone’s outlook, including yours 🙂