This past week I have immersed myself in listening to one of my favorite podcast’s “The Happiness Lab” with Dr. Laurie Santos. There are some new episodes so with glee I have been listening to them over and over and over and over.  I do have a tendency to repeatedly listen (or watch) something I like.

Margaret Mead said “Never doubt that a small group fo thoughtful committed of  citizens can change the world. Indeed it is only thing that ever has.”

The past few days I have listened to an episode titled the “Kindness of Strangers.” Part of the episode explored the bystander actions of Kitty Genovese who was murdered in 1964. It was reported at the time that there were 38 bystanders who did nothing to help. Yet when Kitty’s older brother went back years later he found that many people tried to help. Another part of the episode explored research regarding bystanders and what propels them into a helping action. Researchers found that giving people to permission to help along with the expectation to be kind made a difference in people taking actions of helping strangers. Researchers found that people want to help. They do want to take actions to help those around them.

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers.You will always find people who are helping.” Fred Rogers

Being in a crowd of people can have an impact on whether or not we take an action to help.  Studies have shown with more people help is less likely to occur unless as Ken Brown states in “The bystander effect is complicated -here’s why” TEDxUIowa “When ONE person actively helps then people are more likely to be in a position to aid further. People become more likely to help.” One person can be the catalyst for unlocking others frozen in the uncertainty swirling in their thoughts of what to do, is it okay to do something, perhaps someone else will do something mindset in that moment.  One person can be the change.

“In a gentle way you can shake the world.” Gandhi

What does this mean to all of us? To me and for you? What we do matters. We can be “the change we want to see in the world” with our actions of kindness and caring for our fellow humans. If we are in a situation where something not good is occurring our personal actions can help others to follow and help.  While we share the  uncertainty of  what to do, or should be do anything, taking a helpful action for another person who appears to be struggling is the right thing to do. Think of it this way. If you are wondering whether or not you want, or should, be doing something to help and support another person it means you want to do something, otherwise you would not be thinking about it.  So do it. Go help and show support. Lead the way of helping and sharing kindness with others.

May your power of one be with you💜

Photo by Nathan Lemon on Unsplash