So, I was out the other day with the kids, running all over town. First there were sports classes, then we ate a healthy(ish) lunch – followed by a going to two local parks that offered some amazing activities. As in, a big hill to run up and down, a zipline, and lots of playground equipment for them. I’m sure there were more than a few calories burned.
As a treat, since it was a warm spring day, we later hopped over to a local frozen yogurt place. They were excited to go there, particularly with the myriad toppings there that would probably negate that fairly nutritious lunch we ate earlier. But after an active day, I thought it would be a refreshing activity.
As we pulled up to the yogurt place, which was in a strip mall (yes, we’re in suburbia), I noticed a big group of people with a table set up out front. My first impression was that it was some kind of sidewalk sale.
It was actually a group of parents and their kids that were there for the purpose of selling Girl Scout cookies. I’ll admit, my first thought was something along the lines of:
“No, I don’t want to buy any cookies. I don’t want to spend money, and I don’t want to eat that stuff.”
As we got out of the car, a few of the little kids walked over with big smiles and shrieked:
“Would like to buy some Girl Scout cookies?!?!”
Seeing these kids so enthusiastic brought my defenses down right away. I still didn’t want to buy any cookies, but instantly had some guilt.
So I smiled and talked a little bit with them and the parents there, and nicely said that I wasn’t going to buy any – but I hope that they have fun and sell a lot that day.
Instantly, I could see a little bit of disappointment in the faces of the parents. It got me thinking about how I might have reacted if I saw someone reject my daughter trying to sell cookies when she was younger. It’s not something that would bother me much, but there would be that slight twinge of disappointment to see your kid get rejected. Yes, it’s the way life is and they’re learning good lessons by hearing people say no, but as parents we’re not always 100% coldly rational 🙂
So that softened me up a little bit. But before I could move on and walk towards the yogurt place, a little kid very smartly handled my rejection by asking if I have tried the new toffee cookie they were selling, which was gluten free. The kid was so nice and enthusiastic, that my final barrier was broken down.
At that point, I smiled and said “Ok, I’ll buy a box!”
Yep, they got me. Hook, line, and sinker.
But you know what, it felt like a good thing to do at the time. I’ve actually written before about the topic of whether or not to buy Girl Scout cookies, and had advocating buying them. So, I guess I was putting my money where my mouth – or at least keyboard – is!
If I needed further affirmation, it came after I made the purchase – when one of the parents told me that the yogurt place was offering 10% for anyone who bought cookies. Hey, perhaps there was some karma involved for making a purchase based on kindness rather than need.
The bottom line, and moral of the story, is that sometimes it’s okay to just give in and spend money on something we might not really need or want. In particular, when it comes to helping people, it can actually be a good thing!
My Questions for You
Have you ever spent money based on wanting to help others, even if you originally didn’t want to?
Do you buy Girl Scout cookies?