This is my all-time favorite question to ask people! As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, it is my personal goal to meet 1200 new people this year. The guidelines I set for myself are that I will introduce myself and allow them to introduce their self. Then I ask them this question, “What do you do to change the world?”
The facial expressions are priceless! Confusion, surprise, appreciation, thought-provoking.
I have really enjoyed the 300+ folks I have met so far. I decided to share a few of the responses I have received from various new friends.
Larry was sitting in the airport in Phoenix off in his own little world. He was sitting next to me with a seat in between us. I interrupted his quiet space and asked if I could introduce myself. I then told him about my goal. He smiled. This was the conversation:
“Hi! I am Derlene Hirtz.” (handshake)
“I am Larry.”
“Larry, what do you do to change the world?”
“I really like helping people. They seem to find themselves in situations they do not know how to handle. I like to help them figure it out so they can move on with their life.”
“Guess what, Larry?” I replied.
“I do the very same thing!”
Larry smiled and thanked me.
I got a phone call just about that time. I moved to a quieter place in the airport to talk. Afterward, I looked to my left. There sat Jen. I could see that Jen was very much an introvert. She would never initiate conversation. That’s okay, she didn’t have to! I was there!
“Hi!” I said.
She looked up like, “oh, are you talking to me?”
“My name is Derlene Hirtz. It is my personal mission to meet 1200 people this year. Would you be one of my 1200?”
“Sure, I guess so. I am Jen.”
“Great! So, Jen, what do you do to change the world?” I asked.
“I help people who have been injured to regain their strength and movement – I am a physical therapist.” Jen replied.
“Oh, that is wonderful!”
I just couldn’t refuse. It is so much fun getting an introvert to engage in conversation. In my experience, once you get them talking, they are so interesting.
We went on to discuss her reasons for flying out the West Coast. She was going out for training to help people have the best fit on their bikes.
“Bikes, did you say bikes?” I eagerly asked. “Bike riding is my great love!”
The conversation took off from there. We ended up sitting next to each other and talking non-stop (yes, she talked as well!). Before I knew it, we were in Orange County unloading. We said our goodbyes.
The story doesn’t end there. We are now Facebook friends and she is helping me live a healthier lifestyle through activity and eating habits.
Who would have ever thought a simple hello could offer so much to a person’s life?!
I also met a couple at a theater recently. They were an elderly couple, charming, and kind. I knew this because they were okay with getting up every time I needed to move out of the row, standing up and moving so I could pass. They always said kind words. The lady sat next to me. Before the show began, she shared that she and her husband were newlyweds. He was 90 (yes, 90!) years old and she was 76. They had found each other a couple of years ago and at 87, he proposed and they got married! My heart was so happy for them! She then shared about their children, spouses that had died, and how they met. It was so wonderful! How do they change they world? They love their families unconditionally, seek the best life offers, and always support each other.
Then there is Nick. He is a Managerial Accountant. I knew that before I introduced myself because I saw his business card.
“Hi, I am Derlene Hirtz.”
“I am Nick.” He replied.
“Nick, what do you do to change the world?” I asked.
He actually sighed and laughed. “I am an accountant. Not very exciting.”
“Oh really? You mean you keep people out of jail because you keep their books in order?” I asked mischievously.
He smiled. “Well, now that you mention it, I guess I do!”
“Nick, on behalf of every one of us that you help, thank you, I don’t look good in orange or black and white stripes.” My attempt at humor.
How can you make someone’s day this week?
“What do you do to change the world?” is a wonderful way to begin. People enjoy talking about themselves and you get to watch the transformation as you help them as they realize they really are contributing to making a difference in our world.
How cool is that?
Have a great week everyone.
We continue to LIVE THE SACRED DANCE that is our awesome life!