Yesterday, I was in the check-out line at Target. I thought I had picked the time that everyone had shopped and gone home. I was wrong. Every line was long, and every shopper seemed to have a million items in the each cart. I settled in for a long wait when the woman in front of me, perusing the latest issue of People, said, “Honey, you go ahead. You’ve got a little basket. I’ve got a bunch of things. And I want to get caught up on the gossip.” (I have noticed lately that strangers have a tendency to call me ‘honey’ or ‘baby.’ Perhaps it’s the deer-in-the-headlights look I often have in crowds.)
Now, this was a little thing, but I don’t think I would have been happier if she’d given me a hundred dollars or Snow Patrol tickets. From that one small encounter:
- I felt more kindly towards all the other people in Target.
- I felt more energized.
- I wanted to do a nice thing for the next person I saw.
It was a good reminder that it doesn’t take much for us to make someone else’s day. (And the dark corollary to that: It often doesn’t take much to ruin someone’s day.)
So today, choose the small, kind act.