A green Texas-shaped lollipop. That lollipop is the only thing that I remember from my childhood trip to San Antonio. Today, I still wonder why that lollipop is the only thing I remember, but it reminds me that little things can leave big impressions. The smallest kind actions toward people can leave lasting impressions.
The day was cooling off and the yard smelled like barbeque and hamburgers. All of my close family friends had gotten together for an FFG, forced family gathering, an annual tradition. One of the friends there was around my age; however, he has a difficult time connecting and socializing with people. Most would consider him a nerd or a dork. His hair was rumpled, and his eyes were drooping. It was easy to tell he had already been put through a tiring day. However, he approached me with a smile and tried to start a conversation and compliment me. He was reaching out and making an attempt to socialize. After a bad day, he was still making an effort to be courteous. Even with his problems socializing, he was trying to be amiable through simple ways. When I was leaving the barbeque, I was still thinking about this conversation, this effort to connect. I realized that kindness can come in small forms. It is not necessary to go out of your way to be kind. To be kind, it only takes a small effort to connect with people in simple ways.
Now, when I think of kindness, I think of this family friend. I have known him all my life, and he always tries to be nice to everyone even though he can be socially awkward. When I see my friends who are having a bad day, I always try to think about what he would do in that situation. As a result, I always end up giving a casual wave, a friendly smile, a polite hello to try to brighten their day. Through him, I have learned that being kind in the simplest of ways can make a big difference.
Being kind only takes a smile, a wave, a conversation, a compliment. It only takes an effort to connect with that person. I believe small acts of kindness can make a difference in other people’s lives even if only to improve their day. People just need to reach out to one another in the simplest ways.
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