Saying hello is easy and important

I live in the Midwest, in a small suburb southwest of the city of Chicago. I love my town and one of the things I love about it is The Plank Trail. I just got my bike fixed so I could ride it again. I even tweeted about it.

When I go out on my bike, I say hello to people. Not aggressively, not obnoxiously, just in a friendly way! I keep a very non scientific count of who replies back. hello

About one in three of the fellow travelers on the trail reply with a simple hi or hello. Yep, 33%. Not very good odds.

I was thinking it was me. I mean, it's the Midwest, aren't we supposed to be living in a friendly area?

wicked-witchWas I inadvertently channeling the Wicked Witch of the West? (Cue the music.)

But then my daughter confided in me that she couldn't believe how unfriendly people are.

Her daughter, my granddaughter, is learning how to speak and Hi is one of her favorite words.

Zara says HI to a lot of people.

She says it to us when she sees it. She says it to people at restaurants and people on the street. She is learning how to talk, be friendly and relate to people.

My daughter tells me that only about 1 in 10 will say it back to her.

Are you kidding me? Saying hello is easy.  Especially to a toddler.

I like saying hi to people, obviously. It's friendly. It gives you a bit of human contact and makes your world a little smaller and friendlier.

It's even good for you because we are human beings, we need to feel noticed and included. If you want you can read the study results here.  But trust me, we are social creatures and we like connections. Saying hi and acknowledging people is one of the ways we can do it.

And it's so darn easy to do something that's nice, good for you and good for others.

hiDo me and yourself a favor, when someone says HI to you, say it back.

Bam, done.

You've just made the world a little bit better and it didn't cost you a thing.

Or you could even say hi first. Gasp!

Is is so hard to just say hello? No! Even a child can do it.


Being friendly to people, especially a young toddler, why that makes me sew happy!

Want to make yourself happy? Check out my Facebook page. Like the page and join the conversation! If you want to keep reading my blog, you can subscribe. To do so, type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. That's all, you're done. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

If you liked the video or the graphic in multiple languages, I think you might like this post also.

I am not the only person who believes in greeting people. Ray Salazar of ChicagoNow wrote an eloquent post on it.

Filed under: advice, aging

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    Kathy Mathews

    My passions are quilting and sewing. Add to that French, Spanish, books, swimming, travels, new restaurants, biking and chocolate and you have me. All of these are best shared with family and friends. Except for chocolate, I prefer not to share that. You can email me at

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