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giving happiness global impact

Day 114: Traffic Jam at every Turn

Traffic Jam

I moved from Toronto to Vancouver just over 4 years ago. I still travel to Toronto for business and to visit family a number of times a year. One of the biggest difference I notices when I moved from Toronto, were the driving habits of each city. People in Vancouver are so polite when driving. They drive slower, they let you in if you need to change lanes. We even have this system on the Lions Gate Bridge were everyone files from 4 lanes down to 1 taking turns one at a time. No honking, no yelling and no road rage. Now don’t get me wrong I’m not saying that Torontonians are not polite or a nice bunch, it’s just a different mentality. Life moves much faster, there are so many more cars on the road and getting from point A to point B in Toronto most days can be challenging.

It took me a while, when I first moved to BC, to lose my Toronto driving techniques of fast driving, blocking road ways to get that little further ahead and ignoring the person that needed to come into my lane.

Today I was in Toronto and I decided you give back in a very subtle but effective way.

Give 114: Day 114

Today, before I got into my car to drive around the crazy traffic of Toronto I made a conscious decision. I was going GIVE back to as many people as I could by driving in a polite manner. I was going to let people in my lane when they try to cut me off, I would let pedestrians cross the road any time they needed, no honking, no swearing, no speeding. I was going to be on the road for about 3 hours in total for the day and I was going to count how many people I could GIVE back to while driving. Here are the total counts:

Letting a car in front of me: 10

Pedestrian Crossing in the middle of a street: 5

Opportunities to honk but didn’t: 3

Opportunity to swear at another driver or give them a nasty look: 6

So in total instead of being nasty to 24 people today instead, I was respectful. If out of those 24 people just 5 in turn did the same thing for another person I figure by the end of the day, if the ripple effect continued, thousands of people potentially did their GIVE of the day by just being courteous to another person.

I know how much I appreciate it when someone is kind to me while driving and with any luck I made a few people feel a little better today. I think the best part was I noticed the change in the way my brain was thinking as well. Without taking any extra time or major effort I was automatically being kinder to others, giving them a little gift in their day.

Time Commitment: 0 –  I was already out driving

Cost: 0

What people are saying about 365give

“I wanted to express my gratitude for the teaching you provided today. Your message was delivered eloquently, compassionately, and without judgment. The kids were engaged, and now have knowledge with which they can change the world. We all appreciated how you took the time to help us learn to build positive mindsets and practice happiness.”
Shelley Gardner, Grade 6 Ridgeview Elementary (West Vancouver)
“Actions really do speak louder than words, which is why I believe the 365give Challenge has resonated throughout my community. Every give we do is so important to us and leaves us happier and appreciating our lives a little bit more than before.”
Mahina Niyozova (Tajikistan)
“After watching the 365give TEDx Talk, I was inspired to join and begin a daily giving program in India. Today, along with 12 other volunteer women, we provide 100 meals to local underprivileged children in Bangalore for school every day.”
Deepika Ahuja, Mom (Bangalore, India)
“My life has greater meaning now.”
Renate Jorge, @BeKindBrazil and 365give Member, Family Program (Brazil)
“I just wanted to share that 365give really helped me. I am a better person now, thank you.”
MayLee, 365give Member, Individual Program
“This 365give Challenge has really injected excitement and extra enthusiasm in each work day as I think about what we can do. It has motivated me and the students.”
Cristina Peters, School Counselor (New York City, USA)
“I have seen a huge shift in energy throughout my classroom since doing the 365give Challenge. The Challenge has empowered my students to make a positive difference in the school’s community and beyond.”
Cella Adriana, Special Needs Educator /The Holliswood School (New York City, USA)
“The 365give Challenge helps students understand their impact on others. It opens avenues for introducing and discussing global and local issues in classrooms. It is powerful to watch students of all ages think about how they can make a change in another person’s life with one small act.”
Jessica Hall, Primary Teacher, French Immersion at École Pauline Johnson (West Vancouver, Canada)