Exercise 160 Giving Helpful Responses

Being helpful is a form of service. How many times have you seen a club, group or business you are associated with in need of some input or something you know that you could help with, but you wound up ignoring the opportunity to assist them? Are you generally helpful to others, or only when there's something in it for you in a direct tangible way? The intangible benefits of feeling good about helping others should never be overlooked. For instance, do you insulate yourself from casual interaction with others in public places? Many people go through a normal day collecting very little information about their environment or what is happening around them. They're rarely curious enough or bold enough to ask questions from strangers. When asked questions themselves, they usually don't want to be bothered, so they respond, "I have no idea."

Instead of saying, "I have no idea" when asked a question, think of something helpful to say for the following questions and alternate with a partner. First, your partner offers something for No.1; then you offer something for No.1 and so on. Proceed as quickly as you can, but keep the flow going.

1) I'm lost in this city. How do I get to Canada from here?

2) I'm a foreigner, and I'd like to start a business in America. Where do I begin?

3) What day does "day light saving time" change in the spring and fall?

4) How can I get tickets for the next international Olympics?

5) Where can I buy organically grown vegetables at a real cheap price?

6) How can I find out whether my tap water is safe to drink?

7) Where can I go to buy a hovercraft?

8) Who can I call to find out if my house is near an earthquake fault?

9) Where can I go to stop the flow of polluting chemicals in the stream behind my house?

10) What can I do to stop the drug dealers from selling drugs in my neighborhood? Points to remember:

A) When you don't know, but want to know, ask someone.

B) When asked for help by someone, think of some helpful response.

C) The more you help others, the more prone others will be to help you.

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