When you think of the people you love the most, isn’t it remarkable to believe you were once strangers? Even your parents and siblings were once new to you and vice versa. And, yet, we tend to fear the stranger now. Or maybe we just choose to not engage. How many of us greet people these days and engage a stranger in conversation without looking for anything in return– no directions, no assistance, no advice? Just a chat for the privilege of learning about another person on his or her journey?
And yet there is value in engaging the people about us. Our experience is richer in community when we come out of our bubbles. We learn things we never knew and open ourselves up to new experience. And, if that is not enough, there are many unexpected rewards of talking to strangers.
Today, keep the phone in your pocket and really see all the people about you. Smile, and greet the stranger. You may well make a new friend.