Meeting Someone New

Meeting Someone New

If I could travel all the time I would. There’s no better feeling on earth (to me at least) than to be able to go someplace new and explore a different culture. One of my goals in life is to go to each continent (except for Antarctica) at least one time before I die. Yeah America is great and everything, but there’s so much more out there.

I lived in London for almost a year, and when I did that I was able to learn so many things. One of my favorite things to do while I was there was meeting new people. I’ve lived on this earth for awhile now, and I can honestly say that before my year abroad I had never met somebody who was Muslim, but when I was living in London, I was not only able to meet people from a different religious background than I have, but I was also able to befriend them. One of these people I met happened to be my flatmate. I can honestly say that this girl has one of the brightest and most joyful souls that I have ever had the pleasure of encountering. She is one of those people who can instantly brighten your day just by being around them. I loved hanging out with her because whenever I was around her I knew that I would be able to laugh and smile. It didn’t matter if we were just talking in the kitchen after we got back from class or if we were riding around together on the tube to some new destination. We would always have a good time together. And while we did have many light conversations, on more than one occasion those discussions veered into the direction of our faiths. Both of us grew up in religious households, and now that we’re adults we’re still trying to figure out how religion fits into our lives. I shared with her my doubts and insecurities, and she echoed many of the same sentiments. Even though we came from different parts of the world and practiced different faiths, we were still able to find similarities between our lives and grow and learn from one another, and that is something that I’m truly thankful for.

Now, I’m totally aware of the fact that not everyone has the ability to go and live in another country for a year, but you can still take the time to get to know somebody that is completely different from you. If your eyes were to land on my flatmate and me when we were hanging out together you probably would’ve thought that we had nothing in common. From a physical standpoint, we couldn’t be more different. I’m probably about a foot taller than her. She dresses conservatively, and I enjoy showing off my body. I always look like I’m not approachable, but she walks around with the biggest grin on her face. But because we took the time to get to know one another, we were able to change each other’s lives for the better. And the same thing can happen for you if you take the chance to open to somebody that you thought you could never open up to.

When we learn from one another, we not only get to know about our differences, but we get to see our similarities as well. And when this happens, we help to get rid of some of that negativity in the world that stems from people being afraid and hesitant to meet people that aren’t exactly like themselves. With each and every new person that we meet, we get to spread some positivity in the world by showing love and compassion to people, and we need more of that. When we turn on the news, most of what we see isn’t pleasant, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t have the power to make the world a better place. Every smile and every kind word can do a lot to improve our world.

So…

Positive thinker, take the  time to meet someone new. Learn from them. Listen to them. Share your experiences. And most importantly, grow from that encounter. There are billions of people in the world, and each one of them has a story to tell. If you try to meet as many of these people as you can, your life will be better for it!