HUMANIZE the Stranger

While speaking on a military installation in Europe this summer, a sailor at the end of the show said, “Today, you taught me how important it is to humanize the stranger.” As he said the words “humanize the stranger,” the hair on the back of my neck stood up. Why?

Think about how our world would change overnight if each of us humanized strangers? We would care for people regardless of who they are or what they believe. We would intervene when strangers were in danger.

While no references to the phrase “humanize the stranger” were in the “Can I Kiss You?” show the sailor attended, he was referring to the portion of the program where he learned to intervene when a person at a bar is trying to facilitate a sexual assault through the use of alcohol. In that scenario, we discuss helping a person who is vulnerable (intoxicated) and what a powerful difference you can make by taking the simple steps we teach.

The sailor’s brain ignited with “Humanize the Stranger” which I love! To humanize the stranger is to attach care and concern for a person you do not know. Many people will say, “I’ll help a friend in need.” What about a stranger in need?

Now thanks to this insightful sailor’s feedback, we are using the phrase “Humanize the Stranger” in our presentations.

In the comments section below, tell of ways and scenarios in life where each of us could learn to “humanize the stranger.” If you have experienced the impact of humanizing the stranger in your own life, share your story.

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