The last week of March I travelled to Edmonton and Calgary. I was fortunate that my schedule gave be two nights in Calgary which allowed me to enjoy two morning walks along the Bow River Walk, part of the TransCanada Trail.
Travelling can be taxing. What I once considered to be enjoyable has become a mélange of new hotels every day, long taxi drives to and from airports, and then the airport itself. I remember the days when getting on an airplane were pleasurable – yes, I remember Wardair! These days it is check-in via a machine, drop off your bag, jump into a line for the security check, take off your jacket, belt, shoes – virtually undress, then pull yourself together again. The entire process, if you’re lucky, takes less than one hour. Where has the pleasure of flying gone?
Likewise to be an employee in an airport has also lost its luster. Airline personnel are more disgruntled. It’s as if the entire system has been dehumanized. This requires a strategy!
A few years ago Jim and I created attractionCARDS, a box of 88 inspiring and attractive messages. We decided this would be a way of changing our interaction with others as we travel. At every opportunity along the way, we offer people a card. Occasionally I am given a look of skepticism to which I respond, “it’s like a fortune cookie without the calories”. That said, the recipient, upon reading the message, always smiles. More importantly, when they read the message, which is always stated in the ‘I’ voice (Example: I acknowledge the greatness of who I am every day!) we experience a shift in their energy.
Jim and I have had numerous examples through our travels. In Chicago, which has to be one of the busiest airports and one where you inevitably are delayed, tension always runs high. As we were exchanging our tickets, because our flight had been cancelled, we were greeted by a lovely man who dealt with us with great caution. Many flights had been cancelled that day. Before beginning our negotiations with him, we offered him a card. He read it, looked at us, tears welling in his eyes and said “Thank you – you have made my day”. He then made ours by searching for the best possible connection for us.
Minutes later we sat down for lunch. The waitress, who was rushing around like the proverbial headless chicken, threw the menus at us. Now we see this as a challenge so when she took our order, we offered her a card. She barely looked at it and scowled at us. About 30 minutes later she came over to our table to thank us and have a conversation. The message it seems landed.
These are but two of many examples. These days I gift cards wherever I go: meetings with clients, grocery stores, my favorite coffee shop, people standing in line, banks, meetings, you name it. My boldness has no limits. The reception is amazing.
Years ago a friend of mine Dawna Markova was co-author on a series of books entitled Random Acts of Kindness. The books addressed those little deeds you do every day for someone else simply because you want to and offered suggestions and stories. This is what attractionCARDS offer me – an opportunity to offer someone an uplifting message that will lift their spirits, and in lifting their spirits lift the world just a little bit.
One of my favorite stores is Talbots and the best one I know is located in the upper Hudson Highlands just outside Coldwater, New York. For a few seasons Jim and I were so well know there that the staff would greet us and wait for their card, their message of the day, and then show the ones they had drawn previously to us. They were stored on the screens of their computers. Message: you cannot take for granted what a simple act of kindness will do or the meaning the other person will derive from it.
My belief is that each person will pull the message that is perfect for them at that moment in time, and that despite only being a few inspiring words, it will have a meaning beyond what I will know. I trust this implicitly – that’s why they are called attractionCARDS.
Whether you use cards such as these to gift forward or simply engage in other random acts of kindness, you lift spirits and in a subtle yet influential way, you contribute to making the world a better place. Here is my call to action to each of you – let’s work together to change the world. Let’s prove the media wrong and focus on the good in the world, in others and in ourselves. Let’s find opportunities every day to lift the spirits of others through random acts of kindness. The result – you will be inspired as well.
Until next time…
Betty Healey is an award winning author, coach and inspiring speaker. Betty and Jim Healey will be offering a one -day workshop, Tapping Into Your Intuition, on April 20th, 2013 where you can learn to access your intuition. attractionCARDS are now available at The Grind or at www.roadSIGNS.ca. To find out more about our products and upcoming events, contact Betty at betty@roadSIGNS.ca or go to http://www.roadsigns.ca.