A Surprising New York State of Mind

New York City
New York City (Flickr )

I just returned with my family from a few days in New York City. We love to experience "the City" this time of year, as there is so much to enjoy.

In years past, we have taken in a few matches at the U.S. Open tennis tournament, enjoyed the cooler temperatures in Central Park, visited some art festivals, just to name a few.

This year, my plan was to spend some time working during the day, and enjoy some of those many offerings in the evenings. We enjoyed a couple of outstanding Broadway productions, a few great restaurants, and beautiful sites walking around Manhattan.

The notable difference this year was the attitude of the people of New York. People say New Yorkers have an attitude, even described as offensive, and if you don't like it, "you can get outta here" (spoken with my best New Yorker accent). However, this trip, things were remarkably different.

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From the moment we arrived, our landlord of the apartment we rented went completely out of her way to be sure we had all that we needed or wanted for the week. In addition, she provided several suggestions of events that might compliment our stay in New York.

"Let this mind be in you all, which was also in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 2:5, MEV).

At first description, this may not sound like a big deal, but after traveling to New York City for several years, the culture is more of a "figure it out yourself" kind of atmosphere.

During the balance of the week we experienced several brief encounters from individuals, workers at events we attended, people in their normal working day, like waiters/servers, that seemed to go out of their way to be polite and pleasant in their demeanor. Lastly, and the one that caught us most off-guard was the daily interaction with our Uber drivers.

Moving about the city was made most easy by the use of Uber drivers. We took approximately 25 separate trips and experienced 24 excellent attitudes.

Overall, to have gone to New York and experienced such a warm reception was a welcome change from past years.

The art of serving may not be so much in the act itself as the attitude behind it. As it says in 1 Peter 4:10, "As everyone has received a gift, even so serve one another with it, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God" (MEV).

My week in NYC encouraged me and sent me back home with a renewed spirit of serving others with an authentic positive attitude. The thought that in some small way our attitudes can lift someone else's spirit leaving a lasting affect makes the effort well worth it.

Jeffrey Smith, a business consultant, is a national speaker and writes on the topic of leadership. His experience as president and CEO of a publicly traded financial company has given him a strong foundation from which to share. 

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