I let a woman go in front of me at the checkout lane today. She had one item to my 12 so I said, “Is that all you have? Why don’t you go ahead.” She flashed the biggest smile I’ve ever seen in my neighborhood grocery store–and trust me, I’m there often enough to know cheerful produce shopping is highly uncommon. She thanked me more out loud than she needed to, announcing to everyone in earshot, “how kind!” She paid for her item and, again, expressed her overwhelming thanks before heading off.
Two things come to mind… Really, that’s it? Give someone a little courtesy and spread a tiny bit of happiness just like that. So simple, so…of course! Second, I think why is this tiny act of kindness so surprising? And isn’t that actually sad?
I challenge you to go outside tomorrow and hold open a door, let someone with bags take your subway seat or, for goodness sake, simply smile at whoever comes your way.
These teeny tiny acts of kindness should not be so rare that they stand out on any given day. We’re not talking about buying the person in line behind you a cup of coffee or feeding the homeless guy you always pass on your way to work. Those are bonified acts of kindness and should be recognized as such. I’m talking about plain common courtesy. How bout we make it common again?