Yesterday at the end of a group fitness class, the instructor had us high five our neighbor for a workout well done. At first, the thought of high-fiving the stranger beside me felt funny. I mean, we hadn’t been introduced let alone exchanged a word in the last 60 minutes of side-by-side sweating. These thoughts quickly escaped me as we clapped our hands together for a moment of dual encouragement. It did feel really good to celebrate a stellar sweat session.
Later that afternoon I went to pick up flowers for a friend. I was blown away by the beautiful arrangement the florist put together. As I began to gush over how great his work was, I instinctually reached up and out for a high five. It felt like the right thing to do. It was as if words weren’t enough to tell him how much I appreciated his efforts.
I now see the beauty in the high five and see it as a step up from words. To me, it’s the difference between saying “nice to meet you” as opposed to offering a handshake. It’s a physical touch, a momentary connection to celebrate something positive.
My weekend challenge is of course to hand out some high fives! Do it for a job well done! Do it to celebrate a game score! Do it because you’re excited, proud, happy and so on. Help bring back the high five! (The thumbs up, however, can stay where it’s at.)