Humans are social creatures and we have an opportunity every day to build others up or tear them down. I struggle with sadness due to all of the killing that has been happening and my heart breaks for the friends and families directly affected. The acidic political fighting that fills the airwaves does not reflect a country of hope, but one of fear and further division. The Cold War and AIDS were the specters looming over my shoulder growing up. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were the shadow for my kids and it looks like terror attacks will be what unsettles the next generation. Is this really the best we can do in the new millennium?
The Summer Olympics in Rio will no doubt bring great athletic feats for us to marvel. Grace and power revealing what talent, hard work and perseverance can deliver. This will be exciting to see, but it is still presented through a glowing screen. You, you have an opportunity to engage the world around you and deliver some inspiration. Sing, write, give hugs, buy someone a cup of coffee, visit the prison, wash the widows car, paint, sincerely ask "how are you" and wait for the answer, take the kid on the corner out for some ice cream, make yet another cat video for YouTube, teach a class, start a prayer group, learn a new language to speak to the immigrant neighbor, visit a mosque, dance!
It doesn't require a trip around the world to find someone in need; I am confident, that within 200 yards of you, there is someone that could benefit from interacting with you, today, even right now. Give the gift of attention, it is a precious commodity, and rarity in our current day. It will take courage and vulnerability, and you have that deep inside, give it a chance to erupt through kindness. The world is looking for a glimmer of goodness and a reason to smile; you can be just the person to deliver.
Going Further: Who inspires you? Who can you inspire?