How ONE Customer Service Call Changed My Perspective

I recently called a newspaper to cancel my subscription. 

I spoke with a friendly guy who tried to keep me subscribed. I didn’t have any desire to renew because I haven’t had much time to read it lately. I am preparing for law school and moving to another state, so it is difficult to read as much as I would like to read. I was ready to say “you know what, please just cancel my subscription. Nothing will change my mind.” 

Thankfully, I didn’t say that. If I did, I would have missed out on such an important lesson about gaining perspective. 

The gentleman on the phone told me that he would be able to give me two months free, since he knew what it was like to be a student. He started telling me about his days as a college student. Not only did he take extra credits every semester, but he also worked 40 hours per week, day in and day out. 

One day, in his second year of college, he woke up and couldn’t feel the left side of his face. Half of his face basically died, he said. 

He was going to school for broadcasting, with hopes of being on television. He couldn’t move forward in that field with his condition. His face would be too much of a distraction. People used to ask him, “what’s wrong with your face?” 

Thankfully, he is back on track now and recovered well from his condition. But honestly, hearing his story broke my heart. It killed me to hear that his dreams of being on television didn’t unfold the way he wanted. At the same time, I was so grateful to hear his story. It gave me PERSPECTIVE. Had I been rude to him, I wouldn’t have been able to hear his incredible story. I wouldn’t have been able to acquire the perspective I needed to hear that day. 

There are too many lessons to count here, but here are four major lessons I learned from this one conversation: 
  1. Everyone has a story to tell. Hear people out. Listen to them. 
  2. Be open-minded. Don’t close your mind to something just because it’s an inconvenience to you. 
  3. The power of perspective is incredible. One perspective can change your way of thinking. 
  4. Health is everything. Always remember how lucky you are to simply be in good health.  Prioritize it, don't neglect it. 
Have you ever experienced anything similar to this story? Let me know! I'd love to hear about it.