Stories of Kindness from Around the World

Small Gestures in the Workplace


--by smileswithhope, posted Aug 7, 2010

One day, while I was walking to work, I decided to bring some flowers that I had picked from my garden that morning. I came across a random stranger, and was inspired to give the bunch to him with a smile card. 

Struck by the sense of joy I felt from giving flowers to another person, and maybe brightening his day, I wanted to do it again.

When I got to my office, I had the idea of anonymously leaving flowers around the workplace. Sometimes, the impersonal atmosphere of the building where I work numbs my spirits a little. It's a nice building, with great light, but it just feels a little sterile sometimes. I figured lots of people might feel the same way, so why not put a little beauty there, and throw in an inspirational quote while I'm at it? After all, who doesn't like flowers?

So, for the past month, I've been putting flowers in a little cup on the sink in the bathroom. Each week, I change the flowers and the quote. It always feels refreshing for me to read quotes like Henry David Thoreau's "If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours" and Gandhi's "The fragrance always remains on the hand that gives the rose." If anything, I figured, it at least makes me smile each time I visit the bathroom. 

Then today, when I walked in, I noticed new flowers in the cup, and a quote that someone else had written!! It said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world" -Gandhi.

For me, seeing this little act was a reminder that, at the end of the day, we're all just people with hearts. Regardless of the various roles and different hats we may wear in the workplace.

I did a little dance and am smiling wide for the rest of the day!  :)

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Readers Comments

Diane Blessing - Schlabach wrote: In today's volatile market place small gestures go a long way. We're bombarded with so much negativity that something as simple as a flower, pen, flashdrive or other small gesture can really make a person's day.
David Haines wrote: Very inspiring! Thank you for sharing this.
Carolyn wrote: I have been inspired by finding this again! I look forward to being a blessing in someones life today annonomously! That is the best part.
sethi wrote: What a great inspiration you are for others. Keep it going.
1golddragonfly wrote: What a great idea! And you inspired another person - marvelous! Thank you for sharing!
unknown wrote: What a beautiful act yours was and what a great act it evoked ... I am very happy to hear this :) So, here's a smile gift from my end ... deepula :)
iferlamb wrote: Terrific! I love that the person how put the second cup was SO inspired they followed your lead. TOO COOL!
smiles...
sonrisa wrote: What a simple idea that's created such beautiful ripples -- amazing! Thanks for what you're doing to make other smile - i think i might try this at my work too :)
JuneBug wrote: I hope this keeps catching on !!! You started a wonderful thing !! :D

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