It was not surprising the road was deserted on a Saturday morning, as I walked to the bus station in this semi-rural part of Kent. A middle aged man, seemed to suddenly emerge on the other side of the road. His long, thick dread locks, partly covered by a loose cap, appeared unkempt, but this may however have been his style.
There were other features I ashamedly, judged him by. My unconscious bias triggering a thought: rough looking, sturdily built, he may have violent tendencies. Another part of my brain braced my anxious emotions, so I deemed it better and respectful as I ought to all men, to greet him. His response was shocking!
He replied with a spontaneous loud “good morning” immediately adding, as he beamed joyfully, “Someone said good morning to me in England!” He seemed ready to dance as he walked on repeating with a glad tone, someone said good morning to him in England. My shock transformed in seconds to a heart fuelled smile. I felt I had caught the same bounce in his steps.
Taking the “risk” of talking to a stranger I had erroneously perceived to be a threat, had been rewarding and stirred positive feelings for us both, a great start to the day!
I felt ashamed for misjudging him and was pleased my risk turned out to yield a pleasantly outcome! It had cost me mental energy that I could well afford and earned me a lesson to be less judgemental! I hoped the rest of the day went well for him and if it didn’t I had at least made a part happier and I was happier too!
People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. Theodore Roosevelt.
Little acts of kindness show people someone cares. Opportunities abound daily to reach out in love: a truthful “how are you?”, a quick caring text. Show someone you care with a little act of kindness. It often costs very little if anything at all!