For the last six months, I've been asking myself this question: What can I do to add value to the lives of the people I'll be in contact with this week?" I've actually been praying about this quite regularly for a few months. I want to leave a positive impact, mainly because I think that's mostly what God does when He interacts with us.
But that idea can get lost in the hyper-spiritual. What does 'adding value' look like with skin on?
I've especially asked the question on Mondays as a way of focusing myself before the week hits me and eats me for dinner, which kind of happens if I'm not careful. And it's a live question because if I don't fight the drift in my life, I can easily become absorbed in what I'm thinking about or preoccupied with and not make anyone's world even somewhat better.
I realize that unless you lock yourself away in a room, all of us are going come into contact with dozens or evens hundreds or thousands of people this week.
Here are some thoughts:
Adding value to interaction with strangers:
- Hold the door open for them
- Strike up casual conversations with people who work in stores
In a closer relationship (and at work and home):
- Listen to people
- Encourage people. Catch them doing something right.
- When faced with a problem, ask a question rather than make a statement. It avoids judgment and keeps everyone engaged in the solution.
- Assume the best. Most people are trying to do the right thing, even if it doesn't seem that way.
- Learn something new and use that learning to help equips and empowers others.
- Forgive quickly. Judge slowly.
That's just a short list of things I've been thinking about. What do you think about that? Helpful question? What would you add or subtract from that list?