How many times have you walked into a room and scanned the horizon for a friendly face, someone who would motion you over to be part of his group, knowing that if you could connect like that it would make all the difference?
How often has someone said to you, “I’ll save you a seat” when you were heading to an event together?
Is it common for you to make eye contact with a homeless woman who asks for money, even if you choose not to give, or especially if you choose not to give?
And on the negative side of this spectrum, have you ever felt like bursting into tears because someone yelled at you in traffic (I have)?
Or have you wanted to crawl under a table when you went to an event and had to circle around pretending you were going somewhere because you couldn’t figure out who was amenable to talking to a stranger, and you didn’t want to look pitiful standing by the bar alone?
It only takes one person to make a huge difference. I was reading an interview with Lady Gaga in TIME, and I was struck by this exchange: Lady Gaga said, “… once I put the Born This Way album out, I noticed a tremendous desire among fans to become braver and more active members of society.”
The TIME interviewer, Belinda Luscombe, answered, “How would, say, an 11-year-old girl live out your idea?”
To which Gaga replied, “She could go up to one person in class who maybe is not one of the cool kids and say, ‘I really like your T-shirt.’ That would be her one great loving and accepting deed for the day.”
That doesn’t sound like much, does it? But do you remember junior high school as I do… and how one word like that from a peer made all the difference?
Or for that matter, do you remember last week and how someone’s inclusion or exclusion of you made all the difference? I do!