Stopped in the Aisle….

Have you ever stopped in the aisle, temporarily blocking the pathway? I have. And I’ve been behind others when they’ve stopped in the aisle, inadvertently blocking others. There was such an instance recently that struck me with some deep thoughts. It made me think about how and where we stop and start. And, in doing so, how does that affect those around us? Do our actions really impact those around us? If so, then to what extent? Furthermore, what is the result on our own lives? These are the types of things that make one stop and think.

What Happened?

I was at an event the other day.  It was between sessions and the main speaker came down the aisle greeting people. He would periodically stop and chat quickly with others, then continue strolling up the aisle. Then stop again. Then continue on.

He eventually stopped and spoke with my friend and I. Then he continued on. After he left us, my friend and I went opposite directions. She headed on up the aisle to where we planned to sit, while I headed towards the exit for a quick errand. I ended up right behind the speaker as he continued on his way.

With the crowds still coming and going, I found myself getting stuck behind him when he stopped. He stood as out-of-the-way as possible, but the flow of people just made things tight. The second time it happened I laughingly joked to him that I was going to sound an alarm every time he stopped and blocked the flow of traffic. Shortly we were moving along again. I laughed and made another joke the third time it happened. Luckily, after that, I was finally free of the crowds and was able to pass him and be on my way.

The Initial Impact

My mind immediately thought of how our “stopping” can have negative effects on all those around us. No matter how minor, everything we do can have ripple effects. I contemplated this speaker and him “stopping” those behind him by his actions. My knee-jerk reaction was just what I did….jokingly reprimand him for “stopping” in the isle. Shouldn’t we all be busy accomplishing our tasks and purposes? We all have places to go, people to see, and things to accomplish. I mean, he was “working”, right?! And we didn’t have “that” long before the next meeting began. Come on! Lol!

Then I thought about this man specifically. He LOVES people. Its obvious in everything he does. He would give you the shirt off his back, or his shoes right off his feet….literally! (Yes, he’s been known to do this and has inspired others to do the same.)  His stopping in the isle can’t be all that bad.  He’s just doing what he does best, loving on people.  

The Real Impact

THEN I had another thought. (I’m sure you’ve already thought this by now also.) We cannot always be going and doing, running and rushing, focusing and pursuing. There is beauty in the slow times. They are just as valuable as our busier times. Everything we do, fast or slow, is valuable to almost everyone around us in one way or another.

Take this speaker. Like I said, he loves people. How valuable I imagine that time was to him to be able to just stroll through the auditorium and speak simply with people on random topics. I am pretty certain it made his heart sing. Likewise, for the people he took the time to stop and visit with, I’m sure it impacted them positively as well. This man travels locally and around the world helping people. I mean literally thousands every year experience positive changes in their lives simply due to this man’s passion to help other people. Yet, despite all his pursuits, stopping in the isle is just as valuable to him as all the other seemingly grand things he pursues.

My Conclusion

So, I stand corrected. Stopping and starting, repeatedly, can be beneficial in their own time and ways. And the impact on others can be just as rewarding. Never discount how valuable and how impacting that minor thing you do can be. I’m sure there is someone somewhere that is grateful for the ripple effects from your efforts.  So, let’s enjoy all of our journey.  Enjoy your stops as well as all your starts.  Go get ’em, tiger!

What are your thoughts? Do you have additional thoughts on stopping and starting? If so, I’d love to hear them! Leave a comment below. Thanks!

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