Just when you start to despair, a ray of hope shines through with simple stories of random acts of kindness. I opened Facebook this evening and the first two posts I read were from people I knew who had experienced random acts of kindness from a stranger today. How uplifting to know that there are still those in our midst whose first thought is to do good for others.
I read recently a suggestion from someone that if you make an effort to perform an act of kindness for someone every day, just something small and random, then by the end of the year you will have brought a smile to 365 people. Speaking of a smile brings to mind the lines of a poem attributed to Spike Milligan.
“Smiling is infectious. You catch it like the flu.
When someone smiled at me today I started to smile too.
I walked around the corner and someone saw me grin.
When he smiled I realised I had passed it on to him.
I thought about the smile and then realised its worth.
A single smile like mine could travel round the earth.
So if you feel a smile begin, don’t leave it undetected.
Start an epidemic and get the world infected.”
That doesn’t mean we should all go around every day grinning like Cheshire cats but we can make the effort to smile at those we interact with. Think of the dozens of people you interact with every day, your bus driver, the barista in the coffee shop, the guy behind the counter selling newspapers and bottled water, the receptionist in the office or the security guard on the door, your co-workers or your bosses. It could be the girl who serves you lunch or the tired retail worker who checks out your purchases for dinner on the way home. Think how much better you will feel if you greet them all with a smile. Think of the knock-on effect on those you meet, for when you smile at them, they more than likely will smile back and be more inclined to pass on that smile to the next person they meet.
So, today I have decided that in future I will make an effort to be more pleasant in my interaction with others, to be friendly and considerate in everything I do. I think that effort will be rewarded with a more positive outlook for me and the knowledge that I may just have made someone smile and brought a little light into their day.