A Behavior to Elevate the New Year

There’s a simple behavior that can elevate the moment we’re in:

Tell people when they do something that touches us.

The deli associate is unusually kind with the frazzled man ahead of us, tell the deli associate it really moved us.

Friend looks great at dinner, tell him.

Coworker bravely owns a mistake she made, tell her.

The cashier always remembers our name, tell him.

It takes the same amount of time as tying our shoes or checking when a movie’s playing.

Plus, it can be retrospective. If you and I dug into our memories, we could both probably come up with a list of teachers, cousins, camp counselors, classmates, coaches who did or said something that touched us. Let’s tell them. As a friend reflected to me once over winter drinks, it can be even more powerful to tell someone days, weeks, months, years after the fact. It’s testament to how enduring their impact has been on us.

There’s plenty in our life it’s too late for, but it’s never too late to tell someone how she or he has moved us.

So as we look across the horizon of the new year, perhaps we could resolve this: do not let a good thing, a kind thing, a beautiful thing go unacknowledged.

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