I'm naturally pretty selfish. I like to think about me and what I want. Thinking about others is hard. Going beyond thinking to actually doing something for another person is even harder.

So last week I forced myself to do a little something for a few someone elses. On Sunday I addressed and stamped seven envelopes. Then each day, I handwrote a short note to one person or couple in my stack. I picked a variety of people I've known in different places and contexts over the years, none of whom I have seen recently.

Besides wanting to make myself do something nice for a fellow human being, I also wanted to offer encouragement or express gratitude for encouragement given to me. Spending a few minutes reflecting on good times in my past and communicating that quickly became something I looked forward to each day.

I'm still pretty selfish. But maybe activities like this will make me a little less so.