The other day I was in the subway station rushing to make it on time for an appointment. From a distance I noticed how there was a woman asking for directions left, right and center. Everyone she would ask would reply with an "I don't know!". By the time the subway came she asked about five people for directions and how she should go about reaching her destination. As the subway approached the station everyone started to ignore her and were rushing to get in while moving on with their lives. The woman asking for directions got frustrated and started screaming at everyone, me included, that how come no one is willing to take the time to show her the way. By that time the subway doors were closing and she was left in agony at the subway stop. Slowly slowly she would become smaller and smaller but her pain was still immense as she was standing there with her hands holding her face and she was probably crying. I felt responsible and she was on my mind after that. I took the subway back to see if she was still there asking for help. She wasn't there anymore. She vanished into the unknown.
I am still thinking of this woman and how difficult must have been for her. Her English wasn't all that good either. I remember when I came to Canada seventeen years ago and how tough it was for me too. I didn't understand what people were saying and that was frustrating enough. I was isolated because I was somewhat afraid of getting lost in the unknown. How would I be able to get home after that? It was scary!
As a society we have become so isolated into our own worlds that we fail to take the time to lend a helping hand to strangers. Media had made us believe that everyone is bad and all of that just made us feel more isolated. We fail to think that that lost person could be us someday. Just imagine being in a place where the language and people are unfamiliar. How difficult it could be! How scary! If we just try to put ourselves in other people's shoes we realize that helping someone could also mean that we help ourselves. We gain a lot more from helping others rather than ignoring opportunities of supporting each other. The world will be a better place if we take the time to show compassion. It will be returned to us in more ways than we can possibly think of.
I encourage everyone to take the time to help at least one person that asks for help. Analyze how it feels. Do not look at reward from that same person as they might pay it forward to someone else, do it just because you are training yourself in the art of helping others. After some time stop and look at how much you gained out of this experience. You might be surprised to find out that you have also receive help from someone else and it felt good. Do it! Just Do It!