So I did something new yesterday.
In an earlier post, I chatted about forming new habits and dedicating some time to doing things which make you feel good about yourself. To consider it collecting habits in your imaginary empowerment box. I suggested spending £2-£5 per week. My suggestions were little material things for YOU such as a coffee or a special lip balm.
Well, my moment of feeling good about myself also helped someone else feel good and it only cost £1 and it doesn’t have to cost you penny.
So I’m going to ask you all to do it!
Within the next week, I’d like you all to ‘spare a moment to share a moment’.
I decided that I would share a few moments with some strangers. Empathy and understanding form a huge part of what the project is built on and basic human interaction and communication is a lost art and really doesn’t cost a thing.
One of the most basic things most of us can be grateful for is simply a roof over our head. A place to exist, sleep and stay warm. However not everyone is quite so lucky. Homelessness is something we are effectively tackling head on in Scotland and the statistics reflect that. Homelessness is scary, isolating and dangerous to those enduring it and can cause shame, guilt and sometimes extreme vulnerability.
Homelessness happens for many reasons. But like everyone, each individual has their own story to share and deserves empathy, not judgement.
Most days, I walk past someone who appears to sleep on the street. More often than not, I find myself avoiding the situation, crossing the street or even saying “sorry” to the person asking for some spare change. That’s the easy thing to do. So I approached two separate homeless women yesterday.
I gave each of them 50p, that was the £1 I spent. But I gave each of them something much more valuable than that: Time. I asked their name, introduced myself and I sat down, watched the world go by with them and had a chat.
I’m not saying this is the way forward or that It will end homelessness. Unfortunately, It won’t change the world we live in. It will take a lot more than a conversation to end the ongoing crisis. However, I am a big believer in the little things adding up to the big things. If each person reading this could spare a moment to share a moment, you’d be bringing a little conversation and joy into someone’s day and that can only make both of you feel some happiness.
With the help of fabulous charities like Shelter Scotland, there is daily work going on to provide safer spaces and a clearer path for those who find themselves sleeping on the streets and I hope that the statistics continue to reflect the amazing work of charities like this to reduce the need for people to sleep rough.
Yesterday I had conversations with Jane and Mary and I gave them both 50p.
Both had very unique stories and both were very appreciative of my time. They shook my hand, remembered my name and had a chit chat! Don’t exclude other humans. You have more in common than you think.
If you do one thing today, spare a moment to share a moment. You never know, you might just brighten up someone’s day. And you don’t even have to spend a thing.
Please share your stories with how you got on.
Love and happy moments,