We’re knee deep in the chaos of the holidays, so it’s really easy to get caught up in the errands, the shopping, and the parties and neglect making a real connection with those around us.
Sure, you have a good time finding the best buys and eat up a half dozen holiday cookies at the party, but when was the last time you looked, I mean REALLY looked, at someone?
We all have a story. We all have that inner critic. The seeds of doubt. The fears. The need to be loved. Dreams and hopes and desires.
Ultimately we all want to be seen.
It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see. – Henry David Thoreau
Earlier this year, I did an adventure race with disabled veterans. Each time I am around them, I am filled with the very best of the human spirit.
They have to overcome so many obstacles on a daily basis, but they continually have to tap into their drive and determination. If we all did this daily, we would be unstoppable!
I’ve also come to see the more humorous side that they see. Able-bodied people stumble all over themselves to help the disabled at these events. While they do appreciate the helping hand like anyone would, they also want to be seen as a person.
(Yes, the guy in the wheelchair DOES want to be a gentleman and hold the door open for you!)
Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts. – Albert Einstein
You’ve probably heard of “namaste” due to the yoga craze right now. It’s an ancient Sanskrit word that means “I bow to you”. There are other variations of meaning too, but my favorite is
The light in me sees the light in you
The person next to you in line at the store has a story.
Maybe they are shopping for their aunt who is dying of cancer. Maybe they are shopping for themselves because they are alone this holiday. Maybe they are filled with love as they buy that special something for their one true love.
Look at them, smile, and think to yourself “I see you”. You will then feel the holiday spirit!
Your Best Gift to Give
When you are fully present with another human being, you are giving your best gift…YOU. Presents do not matter in the big scheme of things. And the best part about it…you can give all year round!
Tell me a story in the comments below of a time that you wanted to be seen or feel that you really saw someone. I love to hear about the connections between two people!
What a beautiful post and sentiment, thank you for that! I recently picked up a hitchhiker on the highway. For some reason, I just felt like it was OK. It was a woman, it was really cold and she was just trying to get from Point A to Point B. I just saw her as a fellow human being, we had a great talk during the ride and I gave her what I had in the car that I thought she could use. The cool thing about it was when I took my exit and I dropped her off, I saw her cross from the north to the south side of the street and then back with something in her hand before she continued across to head west. As the light changed and I took the turn, I saw there was a man sitting at the highway exit corner asking for help, and he had seen her get out of my car, motioned her over and gave her either money or food. That was an incredible act of generosity and humanity to witness, and really showed their true spirit as human beings.
Wow, Dana! Good for you! There have been many times where I’ve thought about it, but couldn’t. (My mom was whispering in my ear…programs!! lol) People all want the same things at their core. Thanks for sharing!
What an awesome, grounding post. When I truly sit down and think about it, connecting with and helping people is what makes me truly happy.
Lately, I’ve made the effort that when I’m with someone, I’m truly with them. Whether it be a family member, co-worker, or friend. Instead of thinking about my blog or checking my iPhone, they have my attention and I’m truly interested in what they have to say. Because in my opinion, when were focused on something or someone, giving anything less than 100% attention is unfair to that thing or person.
Thanks Tim! You’re absolutely right. Having that awareness is key. I think its really easy to get caught up in multitasking with so many things vying for our attention. Whether its another person or a task like our blogs, we don’t give our best if we’re only half in it.
As usual this shows what I already knew. You are beautiful inside and out. I love you my friend.
Certainly needed over here in the UK Tami..soldiers returning home are not allowed into some cafes in uniform..serving soldiers thrown into prison for reportedly shooting a seriously wounded enemy (what the hell was he supposed to do in a battle zone) The Prime Minister who sent him to war on a lie is now making millions of dollars advising Eastern European dictators on “How To Govern.”
The soldiers over here certainly need a smile, a handshake and recognition.