Word-Of-the-Week #853: Brighten

December 10, 2020 by · Comments Off on Word-Of-the-Week #853: Brighten 

Brighten to make or become cheerful.

Do you know how easy it is to brighten someone’s day? When’s the last time you sent someone a handwritten note in the mail? When’s the last time someone sent you one? How did that make you feel?

“If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping in a tent with a mosquito.” ~African Proverb

The week’s inspiration comes from “8 Simple Ways to Brighten Someone’s Day,” By Krista Butler. I will share her are eight ideas in 2 WOW’s

“I have a love-hate relationship with airports.

On the one hand, it’s the perfect place to people-watch. I mean, how can you not tear up when you see a kid running to give a returning parent a giant hug? Or two lovers reuniting and smiling from ear to ear when they lay eyes on each other? You are witness to perfect snippets of pure, genuine emotional connection.

On the other hand, airports can be a drag. Long line-ups, having to chug my water bottle because I usually forget to empty it beforehand, taking my shoes off and stepping on my tiptoes to avoid my bare feet touching the cold airport floor.

But on my latest visit to the airport, my negative attitude vanished all because of one airport security employee.

As I was standing in line doing a mental inventory of all the liquids I would need to empty out of my purse, she was directing people through the line up in the best possible way. She was yelling positive messages like, “Life is good!” and “It’s a great day!”

What a rare and beautiful thing to do.

It put a smile on my face and truly impacted my flight and rest of the day. Her joie de vivre was contagious.

I never would have expected this from an airport security employee.

Which got me thinking, how can I brighten someone’s day within my normal realm of work?

1. Leave inspirational notes in random places.

Books in the library, on people’s car window, under your lover’s pillow, wherever.

How awesome would it walk into a public restroom and find a sticky-note on the mirror that says something like, “Make it a great day”? I predict it will also be just as awesome and exhilarating to be the one to leave the note.

2. Thank someone.

Who in your life has positively impacted you? A teacher, your mom, your brother, an old neighbor, a coach? Send them an email and share a memory and your gratitude for the positive influence they’ve had in your life.

3. Be curious about someone.

Make eye contact and smile. Acknowledge their existence and engage them in conversation. Learn something about them. A two-minute conversation can brighten the day for both of you.

4. Send a handwritten note.

Who doesn’t love getting mail? There’s a total thrill in seeing an envelope with your name on it. Surprise someone with a handwritten note just because. I can almost guarantee they will smile ear-to-ear when they receive it.

When you brighten someone’s day, you are simultaneously stirring up positive energy within yourself. And you’ll carry this energy with you throughout your day. It’s a great feeling.

So I challenge you to ask yourself, how can something I do today surprise and delight another individual?”

This week is all about brightening someone’s day! How often do you do random acts of kindness? How good are you at listening and finding out about someone? When was the last time someone brightened your day?

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