How Will You Make Someone’s Day Today?
One of the most important questions I think we should ask ourselves every single day is, “How can I make someone’s day better?” There is way too much hate going on in the world right now. We need to stop being haters. “And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate”. Thanks Taylor Swift, for reminding us.
Have you been thinking about how you can make someone’s day a little brighter? Do you want to do something kind for a random stranger? Have you been thinking about anyone in particular? Do you have a family member you haven’t talked to for a while that you need to reach out to? Do you have a friend who is sick or suffering that needs a pick me up?
One of my dearest friends and coworkers found out she had breast cancer just over a year ago. Unfortunately, the cancer was aggressive and spread to her liver, bones, and brain. There was nothing any of the doctors could do to save her.
She eventually had to quit working. The last thing she said to all of us on her last day of work was, “Don’t forget about me.” Those words hit me like a ton of bricks. She wasn’t saying that she wants us to think about her all the time, she was letting us know that she wants us to all stay connected.
People need to be connected to other people! “People who need people, are the luckiest people in the world.” You can thank Barbara Streisand for those lyrics. Everyone needs people and those connections. When we can make someone’s day, those connections become stronger. My friend needed us and we needed her.
Maya Angelou said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
When someone says to me, “You made my day,” something I may have said, or something I may have done, made them feel special or happy. Mission accomplished.
My dear friend and coworker died on Friday. I did my best not to forget about her. I did my best to let her know that she was loved by me.
So how do you make someone’s day a little brighter? Let’s get on with it shall we?
- Make Someone’s day by sending them a text. I know you are thinking that texts aren’t very personable, but we are going to start small. A simple text that says, “You are not alone” or “You mean the world to me” can make all of the difference in someone’s day. My husband sent me a bitmoji the other day that said, “I love you heaps.” (guy holding a huge and overflowing spoonful of hearts) It made my day.
- Call someone on the phone. What?? I know what you are thinking. So many people have anxiety when it comes to talking on the phone. People are talking on the phone less and less. You may have heard the widely cited statistic that more than 90 percent of communication is nonverbal. But when was the last time you called your mom or dad? Pick up the phone and give them a call and let them know that you are thinking about them.
- Leave a note on the bathroom mirror of someone in your house. Dry Erase markers work great, or a simple note written on a post it. I read a note on the mirror that read, “You are gorgeous and that is the least interesting thing about you.” Ahhh.
- Leave a note on a car to make someone’s day better. This could be any random person or someone you know. If you google and type in “crazy notes left behind” you will see a ton of hate and ridiculousness. Actually, don’t go there, instead write a kind note to someone and put it on their car. Maybe we could start a movement and leave kind notes on cars in the parking lot at school and work. It could possibly change the world.
- Do you really want to make someone’s day? The next time you are at the drive thru window, buy the food for the person behind you. My son worked at Taco Bell a few years ago. One day a guy paid for the car behind him, and then that guy paid for the food of the person behind him and so on. It went on for five cars. Doing kind things for people is contagious.
- Thank you notes are one of my favorite ways to make someone’s day. What makes receiving a thank you note even more special, is if the note has been addressed, stamped and mailed. Do you think your kids’ soccer coach could use a thank you? What about your kids teacher, principal or the lunchroom people? Do you have a friend that can use a “thank you”? Send one today!
- Complements can go a long way if you want to make someone’s day better. I don’t mean stale compliments like, “you look nice today.” This one might require you to pay more attention to other peoples’ interactions. Try something more like, “Wow, I love how you handled that difficult customer.” or “Your lesson today was very inspiring.” It is important to be genuine when complimenting people.
- Look for and pay attention to people’s needs and fill those needs. Do you have a neighbor with 4 little kids who just had surgery? Bring them dinner or offer to bring their kids to dance practice. Did a coworker forget to bring a lunch? Offer to buy them one or share yours. Do you have a sick friend? Bring him/her some soup. The possibilities are endless.
- Show empathy to people who struggle or who are different that you and give them a hand. Recently, I was pulling out of a parking stall at the grocery store when I saw a mom with several kids struggle to get her kids and a cart full of groceries to her minivan. Two kids were running around the parking lot as the mom was trying to get a baby in a car seat. I could see that this mom was telling the kids running around to stop and come to the van. I watched another lady walk up to the mom and ask how she could help. Together, the two ladies gathered the children, and put the groceries and kids safely in the van. The lady gave the mom a hug and they parted ways.
I am pretty sure that the mom didn’t feel judged by the good Samaritan and grateful for the help. It was fascinating to me that this good Samaritan didn’t criticize or judge the mom for not keeping her children together. But instead, she empathized with the mom and asked how she could help.
Too often we judge people who handle things differently than we do. We say or show annoyance to people who are different than we are. Try putting yourself in the other person’s shoes. We are all trying to make it in this difficult world. Let’s give each other a break.
- Be Kind and be friendly. Treat people you come in contact with like they are the most important person in the world. I worked at a fast food place when I was a teenager. For the most part, customers were fairly blah. In the 18 months that I worked there, only a few people stood out as being friendly. Most people would just place their order, pay, get their food, and move on.
We forget that when we are across the counter from someone, they may be having a bad day. They could use a friendly smile. Call them by their name, and be genuinely interested in them. Do you know the janitor at your work? The person who delivers your sandwich? Find out and make their day by being kind.
I hope these tips helped you be more aware of how easy it is to make someone’s day. We are all part of the human race who need a connection with other people. Don’t forget that there is someone out there who needs you.
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