The smallest compliment can make the biggest impact on someone who may be otherwise down and out, and oftentimes it is all that is needed to bring them back to a happier place.
I remember being at the shop center getting groceries a few weeks back and was confronted with an incredible experience that uplifted my soul. I met a man there who was in his early twenties who was working at the checkout, he was tall, a bit over weight and he had a dark cloud over him, I wasn’t sure what it was, but there was something about his story that seemed lonely or hurt. Regardless of that cloud, he greeted me with a smile, positivity and real sincerity, asking me how my day had been in a way that showed that he really cared. It’s a generic question, “how has your day been?” but when someone really means it, it shows. He was just really sincere when he asked and the presence that came off of him impacted me in such a positive way that as I was walking off I felt uplifted by the fact that someone wasn’t just going through the routine of asking that generic question, but that there was real emotion behind it.
As I approached my car I thought for a minute that I should go back and tell him how I felt from talking to him, but a little voice in my head said, “its too late, you have walked away from the checkout, just go home.”
But then another voice chirped in and said, “he has no way of knowing that his presence impacted you if you don’t actually tell him” So, just before getting to my car I decided to turn around and go back.
I approached the counter and said to him “I just wanted to say, you have a really beautiful presence, it really uplifted me”
He lit up, his stance changed, the cloud that was over him dissipated and he immediately held himself with confidence saying to me “thank you man, that means a lot” his energy had completely changed. In a few words someone else was able to positively impact my day and in a few words back I was able to positively impact theirs.
I haven’t seen him at the shops again and I am really glad that I spoke up when I had the chance.
The thing is, that although not much was said between us, what was said….“said a lot”.
It wasn’t superficial, we were creating sincere connection between the human side of us. Focusing on something more than an outward appearance.
You have to remind yourself to look at something about someone that shows who their true character is, and shine a light on it, help them bring it out. Most people that have something inside to express, that inner beauty, rarely get acknowledgment of that. In a world were people are so focused on the material aspects to life it can be hard to look past appearances and although outward appearances can be a great way to start a conversation, if the conversation doesn’t move on to anything deeper it means nothing. The thing that lies past appearances is depth of character, it is real human connection.
Its a small thing, a simple thing. To bring that light out in someone else by saying a few words of kindness. Simply try complimenting 1 person, every day on their character, with no ulterior motive except for the fact that you want to acknowledge their true essence.
It will brighten them up, it may even help to shift a cloud from over their heads, it may be all that they need to bring more light into the rest of their world.