Doug – “no big deal. 40s era stuff”

Flash back. The rain had not started yet, no cold medication had been ingested, the back and my family and I were walking an outdoor mall enjoying the crisp pre-rain air.

Confession: at the time a was fifteen pounds up and blaming it on the holidays, but it really was the byproduct of all the snacking I’d been doing, being desk bound in all the writing for 365

The challenge was on, my stomach bulge had to be destroyed, so when my wife and daughter needed their frozen delights, I stood strong, You go. I told them, I’ll wait here.

Although the temptation was overwhelming, I stayed outside a beckoning Menchies Frozen Yogurt while my family went in for their treat

There I was, clenched mind, No, I won’t do it, yogurt voice, get out of my head, repeating in my brain, when I saw my snack impulse savior, Doug, sitting at a table in front of the same yogurt joint that was pulling to kill me. Something told me he was in the same boat as I, so I approached him with a 365 invite.

Turned out my impression was correct. We laughed as we bonded in our equal reasons for sitting outside, and began talking about the history of 365 and our mission.

Now here is where Meghan’s story picks up. Doug’s first words for us: “Take it less seriously; take a moment; less stress, and floss daily.”

Meghan’s youthful outlook on stress had grounded the words of Doug, a man deep into his life and career. Yet still, the message was quite similar. What does that illustrate for us I won’t answer; I’ll just let it hang for our own reflection.

Doug was a seasoned professional working in a high-level corporate management position and it was very random that I meet him that evening. Was there a higher power connecting the dots. I have no idea. All I knew is that I was there, sitting with a stranger who was becoming a friend for a moment.

There was a peace about Doug. We talked of work and stress. His perspective were well developed, “If things go sideways at work, don’t let it bring your day down,” he counseled.

He talked of what he witnessed at his evening dinner with friends. “We watched a table go off on waiter. Bring it down a notch. Life is too short for anger. Rage it is not worth it.”

We discussed antidotes to the insidious persuasions of negativity. Subtle acts like, per Doug’s suggestion, “Open the door for someone, or maybe, let someone else go into traffic. No big deal, 40s era stuff.”

Remember Meghan’s comments on media and society?

Doug’s words: “I’d like to see media less judgmental and a world that is also less judgmental. There is way too much murder, death and judgment in the media. It would be nice to see more positive news and programming that is not focused on conflict, anger and hate, like so many of the reality shows.”


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