Our family has at long last entered the 21st century. Toll roads are prevalent here in Central Florida. At traditional toll booths, real people ask for your dollar in exchange for the privilege of driving on some of Florida’s most traveled corridors.
Recently succumbing to the allure of SunPass, we are now able to avoid those long toll lines and cruise by a sensor at 70 mph. The necessary funds for the toll are automatically withdrawn from our account. Funny thing is, I sometimes miss those toll booths.
Every so often, our family would pull up to one of those booths with two dollars in our hand, one dollar for our own toll as well as one dollar for the car behind us. It felt good to perform a random act of kindness, to watch an occasional smile spread across the attendant’s face. It’s enlightening to notice that your kind acts not only affect the lives you touch directly. They also impact others who are peripherally witnessing your goodwill.
On one day, we learned that this pay it forward toll movement that was started by a single individual carried on for more than 50 cars that followed! Each person could have simply said ‘thank you’ and carried on their way. Instead, each car decided to pay it forward (or backwards, as it may be in this case) to cover the toll of the car behind them. Just the thought of this benevolence inspires me to bestow future acts of random kindness upon others.
There are people all over the world who pay it forward each and every day. Think about what our lives would be like if everyone cared only about themselves. If no acts of generosity were freely shared with others, we would occupy one bitter society. It is those who pay it forward that add a spring to our step and restore our faith in humanity.
Through this blog, I have been fortunate to attract like-minded people into my virtual online sphere. These individuals have shared unique perspectives on the views expressed in my writing. They have provided inspiration of their own to make me think, laugh, act, and express myself more deeply through my words. I undertook writing as a solitary process. But, it became so much more when I was able to share it with others. When I am able to express my authentic self and have it make a difference to even one other person, the gratification of the entire writing process grows exponentially. We all want to make a difference and we all can.
Today, I was nominated by a fellow writer for the versatile blogger award. This is an award given by fellow bloggers as a sign of appreciation, respect, and support for their offerings to the blogosphere. I am very touched and honored to be included as a part of this wonderful community. I have had the opportunity to meet, albeit virtually, many people over the last several months. Through their own writing, I have been inspired to express myself and live life with more energy, clarity, and conviction.
A sincere thank you to Sara at BeTheLoveOfLife who has nominated me for this award. Her blog about life, love, and the love of life is an inspiration to all those who want to cultivate fullness in mind, body, heart, and soul. If you haven’t already done so, you owe it to yourself to check out her blog at BeTheLoveOfLife.
There are an agreed upon set of rules that accompany this award. In the true spirit of paying it forward, you are asked to nominate up to 15 other bloggers to receive this award. I have chosen those blogs that have provided me with what I like to call my daily caffeine for the soul. When I sit down first thing in the morning with my cup of coffee, these bloggers have provided virtual caffeine through their words to help kick-start my day.
In addition to passing this torch on to others, you are asked to share seven things that people might not know about you. Reader beware 😉
- After a big meal, I have a bowl of salad and a slice of bread. I don’t know why.
- I like the smell of new books.
- I love Mexican food, but I severely dislike cilantro (and beets, but that has no relevance).
- I have an uncanny ability to pronounce words backwards and confuse the heck out of people. Just because I can. Useless, but interesting and fun. Try it some time.
- I am fascinated by numbers, codes, and patterns.
- I didn’t own a smartphone until 9 months ago. I was afraid it would be smarter than me. As it turns out, it probably is.
- I was married at Disney World where dreams really do come true. I love you sunshine 😉
As one of my recent posts indicates, the four words that best define my view on life are “inspire and be inspired”. I have been inspired by the actions, thoughts, words, and feelings of my wife, my son, and my friends (both live and virtual). My wish is to reciprocate those inspiring moments, in some small way, with the intention of paying it forward.
You may be only one person in this world, but to one person at one time, you are the world. ~Anonymous
Be the world to that person. A smile given to another is a smile received in your soul.