Confession #2: Blogging is so therapeutic. Even though I ramble on and on to my possibly two readers about how to do this or what to do about that, when it comes down to it I am the one who has benefited from the whole thing. It's like I get my words out. This incessant need to get my thoughts out there is abated for a few days.
Confession #3: I have narcissistic tendencies ... I'll admit it.
My daughter, who works at a video store, was telling me that hardly any customers look her in the eye when they come to the counter. With some of the choices they make in movies they rent, I can understand why, but it has bothered my daughter enough that she has mentioned it to me a few times, and even written about it in a Facebook status.
I find I can go through my day and not notice anyone or anything. I'm so busy rushing with a whole lot of to do about nothing. It's pathetic.
I've been thinking about this for a while. I've been trying to be more aware of people. More helpful. More kind. More generous. Then this morning a girlfriend of mine was mentioning on Facebook that today was the first day of Advent. I'm not Catholic so I am unfamiliar with the whole Advent thing, except for the chocolate calendars. Walmart had them for $1 this year! I digress. One of the traditions of her family is to draw a family member's name at random on the first day of advent. Then they have to do something nice for that person every day for four weeks. Four weeks of kindness! Wow. Of course being my narcissistic self my first thought was "oooh, I'd have 28 days of something nice happening" not thinking that I would have to do it too. As I only read about her tradition today I think it's a little late to spur it on my family - "Hey guess what we're doing? Now you have to do something lovely every day to _______ for four weeks. Have at 'er." I don't think that would go over that well.
But it got me to thinking what if I chose to draw the 'world' as my name in the hat. What if I do something nice for someone, anyone, each day for four weeks. Take the focus off of me for once and put it on to someone else. Sounds like a good plan to me. And with the Christmas season coming up - a time of giving and family and everyone seems to be in a better mood - what could be a better time for me to do it?
Now I'm not really into the whole buy someone a coffee at Starbucks thing. To be honest I find that rather lame. It's nice and all, but unless I felt drawn to buy a particular person a coffee I don't really see the point. Anyone who is at a Starbucks buying a Vente Soya whatever has more extra money than I do and if they don't what the hell are they buying non essentials at Starbucks for? So I can't see me buying the next person who comes to the counter their mocha latte extra whip.
What I am talking about is noticing people. Getting to know them. Taking the time. Like for instance, the teller at the bank. The Walmart greeter or cashier. The cashier at grocery store. The person on the street. The person waiting in line with you. The homeless guy at the grocery store testing out all the samples. I want to give those people my time, my energy, my focus, my charity. I want to make them feel special. And in order to do that I need to be aware of my surroundings and not be on the phone. I need to take the focus off of me and on to someone else. I need to be genuinely interested.
But I don't want to limit myself - for the next four weeks I want to do something kind, or be kind to someone every day. It may mean making my daughter her lunch. It may mean giving to a local charity. It may mean bringing cookies to a neighbour. It could mean a lot of things. But I'm going to keep track of my "Not all about me moment" NAAMM in my handy dandy little book.
I guess I take the chance of writing this and having it become all about me again. I am not doing this to show how wonderful a person I am. Trust me, I'm not. I'm chalk full of flaws. I'm doing this for me, so that I am not so self absorbed.
I started already today when I bought my groceries. I dropped off some clothes at a charity which was no big deal. The best part was when I found out that the girl at the cashier is in school studying art. She wants to be an document authenticator. What's a document authenticator you ask? Well, its the person who can tell who made what in the art world by their particular technique and style even when the work is not signed by the artist. She also used to have a bunny. A little attack bunny who used to bite her and be really mean. I would not know that if I hadn't bothered to stop and notice. When I left the grocery store, she had a big smile on her face, because I took the time and was interested in her. Now to me that is an act of kindness and yet I felt better. So maybe this is all about me anyways. Oh well you can't blame a girl for trying.
Week 11 - Not all about me moments every day.