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Posts Tagged ‘Holiday Shopping’

Fair warning: This is not a post about being a clever buyer, thrifty shopper or getting everything crossed off your shopping list in the most efficient ways possible.

Au contraire, this is a little bit about how to make the world a better place and a lot about shifting your focus from your personal shopping mission to being a “shopping missionary” to others. Or, in short, how to be an angel of sorts.

In the spirit of the season, here are some ideas for making the most of the remaining shopping days:

1.) Go ahead, give the guy (who pretended not to see you) that coveted parking space you waited several minutes to snag. Wave at him when you finally catch his eye. With all five fingers.

2.) Be alert. There is a fellow shopper lurking around the next oversized display about to bash into your buggy. Make sure you smile when they do, and give them the right of way. Do not follow and tailgate them in retaliation.

3.) It’s you versus the shopper that got to the last Sophia the First Talking Vanity or (insert this season’s hottest toy) – at the same time. Override your competitive and/or greedy spirit ahead of time and plan to let them have it. Think to yourself how much gratitude you brought to your fellow shopper, and joy to an unknown child. Besides, you are creative and can figure out a Plan B. Right?

4.) Distracted drivers are the featured bargain of this week, and most of them are in a hurry AND not paying attention. Stop and wave them ahead or wherever – so they don’t rear-end you or hit you head-on. And for Pete’s sake, do your part and stay off your phone!

5.) Make sure to make a thoughtful and pleasant comment to your checker (with eye contact)– thank them for their good attitude, for being so efficient in the face of Christmas commotion, etc.

6.) Carry little gifts on hand to give randomly – a special sticker to the little child wailing in need of a nap whose mother is harried and stressed (ask first!), a little packet of mistletoe to the bickering couple in the stocking stuffer aisle…or a little gift card to the homeless guy who you always see shuffling down that certain street…

7.) When the shopper in front of you walks too slowly, or worse – stops – smack dab in the middle of the aisle, blocking you and everyone behind you, resist your inner Yankee from saying anything for a bit. Hold your tongue and give them a chance to notice their faux pas and self-correct, after you smile kindly. Reserve the polite “excuse me” for extreme cases. This is in keeping with the Southern tradition of never honking your car horn. Evuh.

8.) Have your change ready for the bell-ringer at the store entrance. You will feel better.

9.) Let the person with 12 items get ahead of you in the 10-item-limit checkout. Even if you only have one item. Don’t forget to smile and make small-talk.

Retailers, grocers…here’s a clever solution!

10.) Pay it forward: quietly pay for something for the cashier to give to the person in line after you, then melt into the busy crowd before the person finds out what you did.

Hey, God, may we remember what this season is all about and conduct ourselves accordingly. Help us to think of the other person more than ourselves, to slow down and savor the season. Let us bring joy to our fellow-man, whether anyone’s watching or not. Give us ample opportunities to practice random acts of kindness, both today and every day.

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