Pay better attention

I stood at the traffic lights this morning beside a toddler in a pram. As the gathered adults stared blankly ahead absorbed in their thoughts or their phones, the toddler intently studied the traffic passing. Every car and truck got intense focus. The toddler was trying to learn something about its strange loud and colourful new world. The adults were elsewhere.

If you want to start small and start now, you need to pay attention to the little things. Small problems, small opportunities, small conversations and small moods all need to be noticed and acted on.

Here’s a question: do you know the shoe colour of the five people nearest you? Shoe colour is not that important but the act of paying better attention is. Paying better attention leads to other insights. For example, if all five are wearing black shoes, perhaps you might want to move somewhere more diverse.

Attention is a sign of respect. Attention is the foundation of learning. Attention drives the opportunity to change.

What small things can you notice today that can lead to a small action of change?

In the spirit of paying better attention, RU OK Day is 11 September. Find out more about how a little attention and a little conversation can make a difference at

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