Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.
- Leo Buscaglia

Monday, April 30, 2012

Last Post from Europe

     I'm writing this post from London where I'm waiting to board a plane home, so this will be the last post from overseas.  While I may likely have more opportunities for kindness on the next leg of my journey, I figured I might as well write about this morning's events now and get this posted for the day.  Hopefully I'll be back on a more "normal" schedule by tomorrow.
     Traveling usually provides plenty of chances to help people if you're looking for them.  Sometimes it's just giving people directions, other times it's helping with luggage or assisting someone who looks confused.  This morning I was able to help two different people with their luggage on the plane.  They were the typical situations where people were struggling to get their carry-on bags up to the overhead bins and then getting them back down again at the conclusion of the flight.  These bags are usually easy to roll along, but it's an entirely different matter when you have to lift them over your head.  This is a particular challenge for older adults.  I usually keep an eye out for these situations and then lend my assistance where appropriate.  
     As I have been traveling quite a bit lately, I've actually been quite surprised at how often I see people who are friendly, helpful, and courteous.  In fact, the vast majority of people are usually pleasant and helpful.  It's another reminder to me that the world is mostly filled with nice people.  And of course, our own orientation also influences what we see.  If we're cynical and critical, we'll usually tune in to that and find it wherever we look.  Conversely, if we're positive, kind, and courteous, we're far more likely to find that wherever we look.  I'd rather choose kindness.

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