Everyday Spirituality

Everyday Spirituality


Experimenting with cookies

posted by Cheryl Petersen

cranberry-Chocolate-Chip-CookiesI just made some oatmeal/cranberry/chocolate chip cookies. Spectacular.

The recipe wasn’t spectacular.

My mixing and baking technique wasn’t spectacular.

It’s what I did with those cookies that proved spectacular.

I put some in a plastic bag and personally delivered them to co-workers.

The cookies were part of an experiment I conducted.

I was testing the effect of kindness on my co-workers, who are under pressure every now and then.

Thing is, I don’t go to the office often because I work from home. So, my experiment required me to find time in the day—a time when I knew my co-workers wouldn’t be bombarded with deadlines—and I delivered the oatmeal/cranberry/chocolate chip cookies to the office.

We chit-chatted for a few minutes. I thanked them for specific tasks they’d performed in the last few weeks.

Every time I run this experiment of taking time away from myself and acknowledging the good accomplishments of others, the evidence piles higher and higher. My job runs smoother. Communication is clearer. And, life feels hopeful.

I’ve run this experiment without cookies and it works just as well.

Once, a co-worker made a big mistake that affected me unhelpfully. When I walked into the office, I could see tangible relief come over her face. She realized I wasn’t angry. We were able to discuss the mistake with the desire to make sure it didn’t happen again.

I have to admit, I’ve conducted this experiment of taking the time to thank others, and it has backfired. But, I’ll keep experimenting, this way I won’t start assuming I know exactly how things will turn out. I won’t write someone off. Experimenting with kindness hasn’t truly failed me yet.



Previous Posts

Training a Wild Mustang
A local 9-year old boy is training a wild mustang. I marvel at the sight of this 9-year boy next to a brawny power horse. Innocence and dedication pierce through the barriers of fear and bulk. The training began mid-March as part of the Youth Mustang Challenge. The challenge was open to you

posted 3:59:40pm Apr. 18, 2014 | read full post »

The family cookbook
Mom kept our family of 7 fed with homemade meals. She typed out favorite recipes and put them in a green ring-binder notebook. The green binder was imprinted in my memory, whether I knew it or not. Mom died more than a decade ago, and when I recently visited my younger sister, I found the infamou

posted 10:27:18am Apr. 14, 2014 | read full post »

Balancing spiritual independence and group settings through leadership
The fastest growing “religion” in the West is the trend toward spiritual independence. Spiritually independent people are eager to explore the teachings, texts, and techniques of all religions and refuse to be limited to or labeled by one religion alone. The religion of Spiritual Independence

posted 7:08:06am Apr. 10, 2014 | read full post »

Timeless gender that makes us feel whole
Growing up on the family farm, I worked right along with the guys, never thinking much about gender until I was in High School when someone said I was gay. Fairly clueless, I ha

posted 8:01:36am Apr. 05, 2014 | read full post »

Zen kitty talks about the weather
I curl up on Cheryl’s lap, glad she has returned home from her trip out west. She showed me pictures of flowers that are in full bloom in Seattle. Then we looked out our window here in upstate New York

posted 8:13:47am Apr. 02, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.