Upward Spiral

Your ability to understand and empathize with others depends mightily on having a steady diet of positivity resonance, as do your potentials for wisdom, spirituality, and health.” – Barbara Frederickson

On Monday Mr D and I went to the grocery store between dropping Miss O at school and dropping him at daycare. While its our special time together, I also love to get some things done and he gets to ride in an elevator so it works all around.

As we were going down a narrow aisle, two boys from the nearby middle school or high school passed us and I thought to myself about the one with the blue hair, “What a nice kid!” I can’t put my finger on exactly what he did – maybe it was the way he looked me in the eye or moved his body to the side to give us extra space, but it was a noticeably pleasant passing.

Two mornings later, we were in the same store, doing the same thing when we came upon the blue haired boy in the self-checkout section. He was asking the attendant to cancel his purchase because he didn’t have enough money. But before they could do that, I stepped across and put my credit card in to pay for the $5.46 purchase. I suspect the boy had $5 and hadn’t counted on the extra cost.

He thanked me, no big deal, and went on his way with his friend. It was a beautiful full circle moment.

It feels like several things I’ve read and listened to lately have had a similar theme – the science of how much our bodies respond to the people around us, even strangers at the grocery store. That our nervous systems are wired to pick up signals from others. The more that we focus our minds on what our bodies already know which is that even our small connections to other people matter, we create an upward spiral of positive resonance.

With the mask mandate lifted in my state so that I see more faces, it feels like I’ve been noticing so many delightful moments of connections with strangers. It’s amazing how wonderful they feel when I make an effort to notice them, recount them to others or remember them and feel the little zing again.

So I pass this one on to you and the upward spiral of positive resonances continues!

(featured photo is of Mr D in a grocery store at a younger age)