A Simple Hello Will Do

Today, I’m beginning the “Live Like it Matters Challenge“ challenges again because of Maureen. Thank you, Maureen.

Not only because of Maureen, but because I believe these practices can help you become a better person. Our habits shape us. When we make a habit of saying hello and thank you to the people around us, or going the extra mile, or writing a note, I believe we are doing something good for the world, and that we are being shaped into the kind of people who notice and care about others.

Each week I will issue a challenge to you to do something to make a positive difference in the lives of those around you, in the place around you, wherever you are.

This challenge is for me, too. Because I forget to make sure to be aware of those around me. To see them. To smile or nod.

But I don’t want to forget. I want to make a difference. I want to live on purpose.

Unfortunately, I’ve been the one in the forever long check out line at the store, staring blankly at the air, unaware of those around me. Not thinking about the elderly lady behind me or the mom with two restless toddlers in her cart whining to go home. Not smiling, not saying anything. Just there, missing an opportunity to do something kind or good. Even if it’s just to say, “Hello, how are you?”

And that’s the challenge this week. SAY HELLO to five strangers. Look them straight in the eyes and say hello. Make sure you’re smiling, too. It may feel strange at first and the stranger may think you’re weird and not respond. That’s fine. You tried.

Try again. Then again. And again. See what happens?

I bet you end up having a nice conversation with one of those strangers this week. I bet you make someone’s day just by smiling and speaking.

Because when you acknowledge someone, you’re telling them they matter.

And they do matter. And you matter and what you do matters. So live on purpose.

Live like it matters. Say hello!

Share with me how the strangers responded. What was your experience? Maybe you do this all the time. I’d love to hear about it.


  1. Claire on November 19, 2021 at 9:46 am

    Marie, I love your posts and that we are so often on the same page. I have been doing this intentionally for about two weeks, and I can report back that it is filling me with joy. The opportunity to be kind to strangers and the familiar difficult people is all around us. Just this morning I gave up a parking spot to a woman in another car and she sat there stunned. It was funny. When I got out of my after we both parked— me a little further away. She thanked me, and I told her to pay it forward! 🙂 Thanks for encouraging us.

    • marieg on November 19, 2021 at 10:35 am

      What a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing, Claire.

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