We’ve all met the official greeters — in stores, banks, churches, theaters, restaurants, and so on. They smile, make eye contact, and welcome us.
How do you react?
Christine Gloss suggests that we should “greet the greeter” in return. (If you’re new to our page today, scroll down and read Monday’s story on Christine’s work.)
“Greeting the greeter” is an example of what Edward Hallowell, a practicing psychiatrist and instructor at the Harvard Medical School, calls a “human moment.” A human moment is a specific kind of interaction between two people. It requires two ingredients, says Hallowell: physical presence and undivided attention.
How often does that happen in your daily experience?
A human moment can be quick, transitory. You may never see the other person again. But such human moments are necessary to counter the growing trend toward social isolation and its deleterious effects on health, happiness and well-being (the growing problem we talked about in Monday’s story).
Christine offered this connecting/generative tip for the week:
The next time you encounter a greeter: Look them in the eye. Give them a smile. Say, “Thanks!”
Engage them in a little conversation, if there’s not a line behind you.
You’ll be surprised at what a charge it gives you. You could say you’re feeding both your souls.
Of course, the wisdom of “greeting the greeter” is that it’s not just about greeters. It’s about the countless opportunities we have around us to create human moments.
Creating human moments is a choice. And making choices involves our deepest values—our guiding principles—about how we treat fellow human beings and how we engage (or not) in the world
Tell us about your human moments. What choices have you made that guide your daily interactions with others?
Stayed tuned to OurValues.org. Tomorrow, we’ll expand the concept of human moments by describing “high-quality connections” and the good news we’ve learned from research about them.
Please, join the discussion this week. Click on the Comment link above — or drop us an Email if that’s easier.
CARE TO READ MORE?
Jump over to ReadTheSpirit today for a quiz that challenges your online “connectivity” — and ends with a video that will leave you smiling about our “greet the greeter” theme today. BUT NOT BEFORE you add your thoughts here, please?