Today I was walking out of a local coffee shop and saw a woman coming towards the entrance. She was about 30 feet from the door so I had every right to just keep on walking. Instead I decided to wait and hold the door for her as she made her way up the stairs. As she approached she made no eye contact with me. As she walked passed me through the door she didn’t even pause to slide me a quick thank you or a smile. I even followed up on the phantom Thank You with a “your welcome” but that did not slow her down. She was stuck in her own little world walking with an air of righteousness that made me laugh out loud inside my head while holding back my innate desire to stick my foot out.
The whole scene was disappointing but it is something I am seeing it more and more these days. For someone who is far from perfect but does try to take that extra step where I can, it is becoming more and more frustrating to deal with this fall of gratitude.
Do any of these scenarios sound familiar?
- You let a pedestrian cross in front of you and proceed to watch them take their time slothing across the street without even a wave of the hand in thanks.
- You walk behind a person as they enter a building and have the door slammed in your face when it could have easily been held for you.
- You are about to walk into an elevator and a person who could have seen you coming if they just looked hits the “close door” button right when you are about to get in.
- You sit on a train and see an elderly person standing and holding on for dear life while a group of teenagers take up 4 seats.
- You sit next to someone on the train, at a sporting event, or some other public place and they talk on their cell as if no one else is around them.
- You have someone not use their turn signal and almost cause you to slam into them?
- You pay for something and not get a thank you from the cashier?
Each of these things happened to me more at least once last week alone. I believe each of these stem from something that becoming less and less important in this world. The act of treating people the way you would want to be treated.
Whoever came up with this simple statement was dead on and should be given a monument. We can all do it starting right now. Think about the impact your actions have on others and find ways to make that impact a positive one for everyone involved. I strongly believe that this self-awareness can only lead to stronger relationships, more opened doors in all aspects of your life, everyone treating each other like a person versus a category, and the great feeling of receiving a thank you for something that took little or no effort on your part.
Go ahead and try it. No one has the right to the thanks or the help of others but everyone has the ability to offer both to everyone around them.
I will get off my soap-box now. Thanks for listening.