Slow down, Unplug, Take interest, Really Connect, and Make a Difference

in Self Motivation

Something a bit different than a typical sales tip today.   But it could have much more of an impact than an opening, answer to objection, or a closing question.   This just happened a couple of hours ago, and I had to get my feelings down in written words while they were so fresh.

I typically stop at the grocery store after the gym in the early morning. At 5:30am there’s not many shoppers so usually it’s just one of several cashiers who handle that shift.

Yris is a lovely, 50-ish Dominican woman with a bright smile and bubbly personality. We usually engage in some small talk about healthy food, based on what I’m buying that day. I hadn’t seen her for awhile. This morning, something seemed a bit off. I asked her if she had a great, long weekend. She just shrugged and said it was OK. I paused, then asked if she had to work all weekend.

“No, actually I had my regular days off.”

So, I just paused again, seeing if she would continue. She then added somberly,

“My husband died last month.”

I’m usually not at a loss for words. But it’s hard to speak when the wind is knocked out of you. “Oh my gosh, I am so sorry,” was the best I could muster.

Then she just kind of frowned. I’ve never felt so awkward at a grocery store checkout. Sure, I’ve said really stupid things there before, and I was really trying to avoid doing it here. “I can tell how much he meant to you.”

“Yes,” she replied.

“Had he been sick?”

Then she opened up and spoke for about a minute, explaining that he had some breathing issues. Yris has a beautiful accent, but often I’m only able to understand about two-thirds of what she says. It didn’t matter. I smiled, nodded my head and listened. (There was no one else in line.)

At that moment I’m also trying to think of how to close it with her on a positive. And I’m also attempting to remember the list of stupid things people say when someone dies, that actually makes the person feel worse.

So I said, “You have this amazing gift of brightening people’s day, please keep doing it. You are making a difference.”

Then I noticed her nametag had “Employee of the Month.” I pointed to it. “You have that for a reason, keep it up.” She smiled proudly.

I’m not even sure where I’m going with this, but that happened right after I spent my workout time this morning thinking about doing a newsletter article about attitude, and how every day is a gift. And how by having feelings of gratitude, and a genuine interest in others we will enrich the lives of everyone around us, and ours as a fringe benefit.

Everyone has something going on in their world. Sometimes we need to slow down, pull our head out of our devices, take interest, listen, and connect human-to human. Everyone benefits.

Be Sociable, Share!

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

bill morgenstein May 31, 2017 at 1:34 pm

Art,

It’s been a number of years since you spent an hour on the phone inspiring my crew with lessons that few forgot. In any case I still follow your meanderings and never cease to be disappointed in your fresh approach.

What you have written above shows a real human spirit. Keep up your fine work.

bill

Reply

Art Sobczak June 1, 2017 at 12:28 pm

Thanks Bill, good to hear from you. I plan on it!

Reply

mark sellers May 31, 2017 at 5:17 pm

Touching piece Art. Thanks for sharing

Reply

Art Sobczak June 1, 2017 at 12:28 pm

My pleasure Mark, thanks for the comment.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: