The joy of stranger connections

The joy of stranger connections

I speed walk to my train stop in Chicago and run down the stairs to get on the el. A couple times lately I yelled, "Woo who, let's get that el" to complete strangers who screamed and raced down the stairs with me. We got the el and it was exhilarating!

Stranger connections of yesterday

Stranger connections of yesterday

Another day last week I frantically even yelled "Please hold the door" and complete strangers did! Those stranger connections that lasted just a faceless minute were pure euphoria.

I adore random acts of kindness such as the baristas when I stop for a Starbucks treat or CTA employees who say "Good morning" to everyone who passes.

Sure, sometimes I'm bewildered by a stranger who stares at me blankly when I say "Hello" — especially if I'm pushing my toddlers in our stroller, but that's the exception and not the norm in our friendly city of Chicago.

Last weekend we ate at an IHOP in Milwaukee with my in-laws and all the kids. The waitress named "Sheree" made our dining experience. She was beyond delightful, complimented me on my do-it-yourself flag manicure that I'm still very proud of...

When my youngest broke a glass, three IHOP employees raced over in record time to clean it up. They asked, "Is anyone hurt?"

Even if you "Don't like people," I dare you to make a friend out of a stranger. It will probably bring a smile to each of your day… Even better, I'd love to hear about the joy you experienced with a stranger connection.

Along these lines, empirical data revealed in a recent New York Times article supports the joy of stranger connections once neuroscienctists did their own research… And, the ChicagoNow blog Quilting! Sewing! Creating! reminds us saying hello is easy and important in addition to 99 ways to be kind without spending a dime thanks to Stop and Blog the Roses.

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Filed under: wellness

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