People may experience a spectrum of emotional responses to the year-end holidays. These range from joy and contentment to frustration and sadness. Of course, some or all of these feelings may surface during the course of the celebratory time.
Faithful readers of this blog know that I’ve posted before on the topic of shaking hands with all manner of folks that I encounter daily. I’m happy to say that doing so has become second nature: at first I tried keeping a mental file of the kinds of strangers and service providers whose hands I shook to express thanks for what they had done for me. Admittedly, in the months that have passed since I began this practice I’ve started to lose track of them!
Now I want to talk a bit about how my handshaking campaign has gone, amid the hustle and bustle of this season. Why did I want to focus particularly on this narrow window of time?
As I noted at the outset, the holidays can leave practically anyone feeling stressed out, regardless of how positive their attitude toward them may be. The tempo of life can accelerate to a frenzy pitch, driving out patience and goodwill, replacing them with exasperation and closed mindedness.
Recognizing this I decided to make even a greater effort to act in a manner that might provide momentary respite for those with whom I interacted. What was my intention? It was to hold hands I grasped in thanks just a little longer, perhaps deepening the brief connection between us.
I have no way to quantify my experiment’s impact. That being said, I’m willing to take it on faith that its been worthwhile!