Nurturing Home Newsletter
No Act of Kindness is Ever Wasted
by Catherine Kao
Have you ever been having a bad day that suddenly changed for the better when a stranger smiled at you? How often has an unexpected compliment made your whole day brighter? Or being let into the grocery store line ahead of someone who had a cart full of groceries so you could pay for your one or two items? You never know how a small gesture such as an unexpected smile can affect someone’s day or on a grander scale, their life? When we treat others pleasantly and with consideration, we show them that they are important.
There have been several times when I had car trouble or a flat tire, and a man stopped to help me. Though I was careful ( I never let them take me anywhere ) and only allowed them to help with the problem, I don’t know what I would have done without their help. And though I often offered to give them something for their trouble, they would just wave as they got back into their cars and watched me safely drive away.
Small Things Can Affect Someone’s Life
A long time ago I had a short-term job in public relations. My job was to contact newspaper editors by phone in order to send them out a how-to article that mentioned a particular non-fiction self help book. I was to get these articles printed for free. This was not an easy assignment and at first I had a great difficulty. I found that my articles did not survive the editors’ vetting services until I developed relationships with the editors. They would tell their assistants, “I’m waiting for this article from this person” and my article would get in print. In order to develop relationships, I had to find out what was important to these editors. One editor was a passionate fan of the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Though I was not a football fan, I knew enough about football that I could ask him intelligent questions and we would talk about the recent Cornhuskers games. Later, he sold the newspaper (he was the editor and the owner) and I left that job for another better paying one. Years later, I was a tax preparer and the guy who sat down in front of me to get his taxes done said, “your voice sounds so familiar to me, but I Can’t place where I might know you from.” After our life locations and associations failed to turn up a link, he thought for a moment and his face brightened up. ” Did you work for XYZ Company in Public Relations?” When I nodded, he said, ” I used to own a newspaper and I remember talking to this girl almost weekly about Cornhusker games. Was that you?” Again I nodded. He said ” Let me tell you how profoundly you affected my life,” It turned out that he was so interested in the articles I had sent him that he read the book and it changed his life. Can you imagine how I felt when he told me that a small gesture over a short period of time had completely changed the course of his life for the better? At that moment I realized the importance of small gestures. I could never have predicted that something small that I did would change someone’s life, just as you might never know how much a smile or a compliment might affect someone’s life.
Another time, I had just come to the end of my first marriage and was feeling broken,used up, and old. I rented a room in a large house shared by two families, and it was the best experience of my life. I can’t tell you how much it meant to me at that time in my life when I felt so worthless that there were people who told me how special I was, how wonderful I was and how beautiful I was. I remember one of my roommates telling me almost everyday that I was a shining star. Their love so freely shared with a stranger and their constant admiration of me and my abilities encouraged me to heal.To pick myself up and make a new life. I can’t predict where my life might have gone if not for their love and the help I got from them. They are still special to me almost 20 years later and I consider them my greatest friends. One day, years later after I was remarried to my present husband and doing well, I asked my friend why she had been so encouraging and admiring of me. She replied, ” We saw that you had been beaten down. You needed to believe in your self again and we just wanted to help you do that so you would realize how very special you are.” It brings tears to my eyes as I write this, because of the effect it wrought in my life.
Small Gestures Can Do BIG Things
This is what you create with smiles, compliments and small gestures. Whether it be to a stranger on the street, or a co-worker, or a neighbor, or a member of your family, or a friend you can sometimes never know how much the small gesture or smile or compliment you gave meant to its recipient. Aesop, the legendary writer of Aesop’s Fables once said, “No act of kindness is ever wasted”
It is so easy to be kind. I have a favorite saying, ” Kindness doesn’t cost”. I have found through experience that my life is a better place through the kindness that I have given to others. I am often the recipient of unexpected kindness because I strive in my daily life to be kind to others.Kindness and consideration of others is one of the nurturer’s daily mottoes. The world is a better place as you practice random acts of kindness. Remember the movie ” Pay It Forward”? Each time that a person received an act of kindness, he was told to pay it forward. In other words, he was told to do something kind to someone else. Though the movie did not end the way it should have, its message was important: Be kind to others in your everyday life. This is the nurturer’s way. It is with the kindness to others that they heal and we reap kindness ourselves. And the world is a better place, all because we show that we care about others in our daily life. We prove conclusively that no man is an island. So to sum this up: Perform random acts of kindness in your daily life. You never know what wonderful effects the small gesture that cost you nothing will produce. I hope this helped you on your nurturing journey! Please forward this newsletter to anyone who you feel may benefit from its information. Look for my next newsletter for more tips on creating a Nurturing Home.