I’m not much of a people watcher, my brain usually works at 100 MPH thinking about this or that, I don’t often pay much mind to what others are doing, but today is different. I have some time to kill this afternoon having just finished writing a blog I found myself without anything else on my list to write about. I am currently sitting in the hotel lobby and found myself just observing the movement of others, it’s fascinating I can see why others do it with more frequency.
So many people pass by one another daily and yet nearly all of them will remain strangers, people will walk within a few feet of one another and not even make eye contact, or worse look right through one another. I suppose it’s easier to do in a place like this where there are so many people coming and going, but I think we all lose out when we don’t take the time to notice others.
I wonder, is it fear or ignorance that we ignore others? I think as people we are so quick to judge others, we make a snap judgment based on what? how somebody looks? the way they carry themselves… I wonder, if we took more time to speak to strangers would our lives be more fulfilled? However you cant just walk up to somebody you don’t know and ask them how their day is going and where are they from can you? I mean, ordinarily, if somebody did that to me I would find it quite strange “who is this random person talking to me and what do they want” but… why not? why is it so strange? we would do it in a professional setting, at a business conference that’s called working the room or networking, but here in a social setting it’s considered anomalous.
There are people in this hotel lobby from all corners of the world, imagine what we could learn from one another if we were just a little more open-minded and more willing to engage in conversation with people from a different background, I suppose this is the case in all walks of life, political discussion for example is a place where most live in echo chambers only hearing sides of the argument that confirms there own thoughts and suspicions. I can’t help but think the more you listen to the other side of an argument, take a different perspective, talk to somebody you have no business talking too, then as a race we will start to take giant leaps forward. Humans stick to tribes as a way of self preservation its the way it has always always been, it just seems that everybody’s tribe seems to have gotten a whole heap smaller over the years, so that actually when we strip it back, these days people tribe is a tribe of one, oneself.
I wonder what people think about me when they look at me, not knowing me.. its an interesting contemplation.
So, next time you find yourself with a bit of time to kill and somebody you don’t know pulls up next to you or catches eyes with you, ask them “how is there day”. since starting Nobody Cares About Dad I have had conversations with people from all over the world, all different backgrounds, it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.