Recently in the car ride home from school, my daughter shared a story of how she says hello to “Mr. Mike,” a facilities manager in the school every day and gives him a hug. She had noticed that not many people would do this and so early in 2nd grade she decided to start smiling towards him, and then wave, then say hello, and finally say “thank you for your work.” It was an act of courage that led to an act of kindness. And this kindness led to leadership. Because over time, her friends started to recognize Mr. Mike and smile, then wave and then say hello. On the last day of school while Kendall was with Elia, Mr. Mike made sure to tell Kendall how much Elia’s kindness meant to him. I’ve always believed that a smile is the greatest asset we have when attempting to create community.
So as we drove home, I mentioned to Elia that I had just finished a book titled “The Power of Positive Thinking” that shared the following: “All humans want to feel appreciated.” It’s true. And it’s simple. But it’s really easy to forget. It’s a simple fact that everyone we come into contact with would benefit from a quick appreciation. Your family, friends, and colleagues will all flourish if under nurturing appreciation. It took my daughter’s courage and consistency to show me. And I couldn’t be more proud of her.
Next time you have the chance to say something nice, share an appreciation, smile, or say thank you…Do It. Take the extra moment and sincerely share that part of yourself. While I know you’ll feel the difference it makes in you by giving, it will certainly create a deep ripple that lasts much longer for someone else.
Note: I found this book, “The Power of Positive Thinking” on a shelf in my house. I have no idea where it came from, but I decided to pick it up and read it. However, I do not endorse it. While it has some great lessons to be learned, it also doesn’t hold up. Some statements included are not inclusive.