Do you avoid the supermarket line with the crabby clerk who is flinging the groceries across the scanner while scowling at the customers? Try this experiment which I love to practice. See if you can convert the cranky clerk, the surly waiter, or the rude, impatient public employee with a dose of kindness and courtesy. It makes a great chance to cultivate the third cardinal virtue spoken of by Lao-tzu: gentleness, which manifests as kindness and consideration for others. Gentleness means accepting life and people as they are—leading the way to peaceful relationships. Kindness is contagious. Modeling it opens the door for the cranky, the surly, the rude, and the crabby to let go of what really are uncomfortable, unhappy, and unrewarding feelings. Smiling and showing consideration for someone’s feelings, pointing out something positive to focus on are ways I like to use in my efforts to convert those who are clearly suffering in their appointed tasks and need help to feel better. Remember the calling of our Divine nature—“How may I serve?” We can serve by offering a helping of kindness to those who serve us and enjoy the pleasure of lifting them up to a more peaceful, joyful place.