5 Things You Can Do To Make 2020 Suck A Lot Less

Matt Lillywhite

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Something that takes you five seconds to do could change the way a stranger sees and interacts with other people. Think of it as a ripple effect. You show kindness to one person, and they pass it on. And before you know it, the entire world is a better place because of one positive interaction you had with a stranger.

My friend, you can have a much more significant impact on the world than you think. What you do every single day could potentially change the world, for better or worse. 

So if you want to make the world a better place, here are several small things you can do to create a big impact in the lives of those around you.

1. Give A Compliment To A Random Stranger.

“Your smile is incredible.” 

That’s something I say to people all the time whenever they look happy in public. It genuinely makes me happy to see people going about their day with a smile on their face.

Honest compliments don’t cost anything. And, of course, it only takes a few seconds to say something nice. The truth is that you never know who’s having a bad day. Thus, one small compliment could have the power to create a big impact in someone’s life.

According to CBS News, generosity is contagious. Therefore, it’s certainly a good idea to become a super-spreader of kindness. One tiny compliment could have an extremely positive impact on the world.

2. Become A Superhero During Every Conversation.

I like to think of listening as a superpower.

Why? Most people don’t know how to do it during a conversation. Sure, they might hear what you say. But more often than not, they’re not listening. Instead, they’re just trying to come up with a response.

According to an article published by Harvard Business Review:

“People perceive the best listeners to be those who periodically ask questions that promote discovery and insight. These questions gently challenge old assumptions but do so in a constructive way.
Sitting there silently nodding does not provide sure evidence that a person is listening, but asking a good question tells the speaker the listener has not only heard what was said, but that they comprehended it well enough to want additional information.”

Show genuine curiosity and ask questions during every conversation. Listen to other people and try to understand their perspective or opinion. The effect it’ll have on your relationships is profound.

3. Wherever You Go, Treat Everyone With Kindness.

You can tell a lot about someone by the way they treat service staff. If they’re nice to everyone they interact with, they’re probably someone with a heart of gold. If not, they might as well be waving a red flag in your face.

I learned this while talking to a flight attendant last year at the back of the plane. She said the kind customers always receive better and friendlier service. For understandable reasons, flight attendants prefer interacting with passengers when kindness and manners are reciprocated.

Treating people with kindness doesn’t have to be complicated. For example, I always smile and make eye contact during a conversation. Also, I say “please” and “thank you” whenever I get an opportunity.

Little things like that can have a massive impact on someone’s day (especially if other customers are being rude).

4. Tell Someone How Much You Love Them.

“I love you” are three words that we don’t hear enough.

For all I know, today could be my last day alive. It could also be the last day of someone I care about. Saying those three words has helped me improve my relationships and have intimate conversations with my loved ones. They know I care about them. And likewise, I know they will always be there for me.

The truth is that we (often) can’t control how long we spend on this earth. However, we always control how frequently we show love and appreciation for those around us.

Love helps us to find hope when there would otherwise be none. It helps to make our day a little bit brighter. When people are kind, we feel inspired to pass on the generosity to other people.

So if you want to make the world a much more compassionate place, start by showing a little bit of love to your loved ones.

5. Make Friends With Someone Who Looks Lonely.

This is something that completely changed my life. How? I started talking to random strangers who looked lonely on the street. For example, I’d speak with someone who was sitting alone in Starbucks. And after thirty minutes of having a conversation together, we often became extremely close friends.

According to the BBC, “There is a growing body of research suggesting that engaging with and trusting people we don’t know is important for our wellbeing and the wellbeing of those we encounter as well as the health of society. For example, friendly behavior to strangers has been linked to higher self-esteem in teenagers in the United States.”

As the old adage goes, a stranger is just a friend that you haven’t met yet.

Give a compliment to a stranger. Become a superhero during every conversation. Treat everyone you meet with kindness. Tell someone you love them. Make friends with someone who looks lonely.

Since I began applying the above points, I’ve started feeling happier each day since I’m creating a positive impact in other people’s lives. And once you start doing the same, I’m confident you’ll see huge benefits, as well.

I’m going to leave you with a beautiful quote from Matshona Dhliwayo, who perfectly sums up what I’m trying to say:

“If everyone decided to forgive at least one person who hurt them by the end of the year, the world would be filled with people exchanging hugs and kisses, instead of words and bullets.”

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Matt Lillywhite publishes national news and local stories. He can be reached via email at Mattlillywhitenewsbreak@gmail.com


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