For the last few days, I’ve been trying to decide what to write this post about, and suddenly — thanks to my husband — it became crystal clear!  I was telling him about something that had really touched my heart earlier in the day.  He made the comment that he was sure it would find its way into my blog at some point.  He was so right!   Here it is:

“There’s no such thing as a small act of kindness.  Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.” – Scott Adams

I saw this quote come alive for me today!  After spending the morning at my office, I drove down to our local Trader Joe’s to pick up some groceries.  I parked my car, and walked across the parking lot to where the shopping carts were stored.  There in front of me was a lady snuggling her small white dog against her body with her left arm, while holding onto a cane with her right hand.  She had a smile on her face as she pulled out a cart.  I was ready to say something to her about how cute her dog looked cuddled up to her, when something distracted me — and the words were left unspoken.

She moved into the store ahead of me, with her dog now safely sitting inside the shopping cart.  As I was looking at the beautiful orchids, I noticed a young woman, who worked for Trader Joe’s, quickly come up to the older woman and begin talking with her.  I couldn’t hear clearly what was said, but it seemed to be something about a problem with having the dog inside, unless it was a service dog.

I heard the older woman talking about really needing to get her groceries right then, because she hadn’t eaten yet.  The next thing I knew, the younger woman smilingly handed the dog to its owner, and then took the cart into her own hands.  Off they went together to get the shopping done!

These two women were unknown to each other just a few minutes earlier.  They were different ages, races, and had different physical abilities, but they were now moving forward as a unit!  As I shopped, I could hear them laughing and talking together.  One read aloud from her grocery list, while carrying her beloved dog, and leaning on her cane.  The other, right beside her, reaching up to take the appropriate items off the shelves and put them into the cart.  They moved up and down one aisle after another.  What had began as a problem to be solved, had turned into a shared task, which both seemed to be enjoying!

The kindness of this young store employee touched my heart.  It would have been so easy for her to have just told the older woman that she would have to leave.  She didn’t have to get involved in helping her.  Instead, she gently reached out to another human being in need.  I don’t know if others in the store were aware of what led to these two women joining together, but I’m so happy that I can share this story with you.  I want the ripples of this unexpected kindness to have no logical end!

Will you help keep it going?  Help me extend the ripples, by sharing this story if it touches your heart, by commenting here with your thoughts, and by paying the same kind of kindness forward to others as you go about your daily lives?  Practice random acts of kindness, just because it feels good!

* Oh…and the next time those of you in Santa Barbara go into the Trader Joe’s on Milpas Street, give an extra big smile to the young woman, with long, wavy hair, who works there.  She is pretty special!   

Until next time,

Linda

12 Comments

  • Linda, what a beautiful story! I have always loved Trader Joe’s and now I love it even more! You are right that most places would have just told the woman to leave the store. This kind of situation renews your faith in humankind. Thanks so much for sharing and for inspiring us all to do our own random acts of kindness!

  • Linda that you so much for sharing this beautiful act and connection of kindness! We all need to remember that it is these small gestures that can be so very ‘large’ in our lives, for ourselves in ‘doing’ as well as being a recepient :), you always share your sunshine..thank you!

  • Thank you, Renee. I’m glad that you liked the post. I already loved Trader Joe’s too. But like you, I love them even more now. I’m thinking of printing out this post and going down to talk with the manager about it. I would love to see this young women get some recognition for her kindness. I know that isn’t why she did it, but still, I would like her to know that it was very heartwarming to me, and to others who have responded to this post. Wouldn’t it be great if this kindness ripple just kept spreading out?!

  • Thank you, Teri. It was a “beautiful act and a connection of kindness!” You’re so right. It enriched both of their lives, and hopefully it will enrich all who read about it. Whenever we reach out with kindness, we make the world a better place for all of us to live. It’s fun to share sunshine! I know you do that all the time!

  • Linda, thank you for the beautiful reminder that if we just listen more carefully to others, the opportunity to connect and be of assistance is sometimes right in front of us. Such a heartwarming story. A big thank you to your husband for mentioning it was blogable!

  • Thanks for your comment, Susan. I’m glad you liked the post. I’ll pass your thanks on to my husband! It is so true that we do often have the “opportunities to connect and be of assistance” if we’re just paying enough attention. Everyone needs help from time to time!

  • Thank you, Linda, for sharing this beautiful story and reminder to live in a place of awareness and openness to connect and be kind to each other. The smallest gesture, such as a smile or a compliment or a friendly hello, can have a huge impact on another human being. A kind act makes everyone feel good, the recipient and the giver!

  • I’m glad you liked the post, Robyn. It is a beautiful story. I’m so glad I witnessed this connection and had the opportunity to share it with others. There are so many people all around the world who feel alone and could benefit so much by the gestures you mentioned. It takes so little for us to reach out, and it can touch someone deeply. You never know how life changing that smile or gentle word could be for another who might be struggling with life. Thank you for commenting!

  • Love the story, Linda. Like everyone else who has commented, I also think that Trader Jo’s is awesome. What floats my boat is that they are a company that empowers their employees and encourages them to do what is right for others for the right reasons. You can feel it when you walk in there–it is part of the culture–and you can feel it in this story.
    Appreciatively,
    Lynn
    Dr. Lynn K. Jones, Certified Personal and Executive Coach
    http://www.lynnkjones.com

  • I agree. You can feel a different energy the minute you step in the door. It seems like the customers pick up on it too, and are happier and friendlier. I’m glad that you could feel that same quality in the story. Thank you for your kind words, Lynn.

    • Thank you, Amy! As a people, we need to come together with a common goal to increase the well-being of our world. After the tragic events of this week, I think it’s even more important to focus on good connections, and caring actions.

      Take good care,

      Linda

Leave a Reply to Susan Ann Darley Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *