Accepting what is makes a difference

Day 40 of A Year of Making a Difference and I ask myself — how is the difference expressing itself within and through me.

When I began this process on January 1 I didn’t really think about the longterm impact, or what it would take to ‘make a difference’ everyday. I just knew I wanted to do something concrete, something of substance that would keep me focused on a daily basis to what it means to be conscious of my difference in the world.

Yesterday, when I posted the video link to my TEDxCalgary talk I was humbled and touched by the comments of others on how they experienced my presentation — and that’s the difference. Making a difference isn’t about what I do or say. It’s about how what I do and say resonates in the world. It’s about the conscious choice to make what I do and say come from a place of Love, of healing, of being ‘the more’ I want to create in the world.

Yesterday, I experimented with making my smile the difference I share. At Costco, a glitch with my membership card meant the line-up behind me ground to a halt. As anyone who’s ever shopped at Costco knows — slowing down the cash register line-up is a no-no! Normally, when glitches like this happen, my facile mind leaps to that place of guilt and fear — I’m sooooo sorry. Oh my. What can I do? and I become flustered and anxious and oh so discombobulated with the whole situation that my energy sends out shockwaves of fear.

Knowing there was nothing to do but accept the situation with grace, I smiled at the three people behind me and thanked them for their patience (have you ever noticed how people don’t know they’re patient until you thank them for it?). The cashier looked flustered for a moment and I asked, “What can we do to fix this?” and miraculously, the fix appeared. Now, I have to acknowledge both the cashier and the young man assisting her. They were awesome. Pleasant. Accommodating and kind. While I straightened up the confusion with my card, the cashier and her assistant worked around my groceries so the line-up moved a little bit, albeit not quickly, but it did keep moving.

And I kept smiling, and thanked people again for their patience.

In the end, the cashier’s assistant pushed my buggy all the way over to the Membership desk so that I could get my photo taken for a new card without having to wait in line. We laughed and smiled, I thanked him for his help (and his patience) and we parted ways with a smile.

What a difference than if I’d thrown a hissy fit, focused on ‘the system’ and its defects. By choosing to accept what was, and not bemoaning what wasn’t —  a renewal that should have had my name but lost it as a joint cardholder — a situation that could have resulted in grumpy staff and grouchy patrons ended with smiles.

I like that difference.