The recent deaths of two people I knew many years ago hit me much harder than I would’ve expected. And, the reason it did, was that even though they’d only been in my life for six months, they provided me with valuable guidance and friendship during a difficult time.

These people had left an indelible mark on many others as well. I heard stories of how they touched lives, even if they just met someone one time. Another told me that just listening to them give a presentation helped spur her growth. While the deceased couple may not have realized the impact of their good deeds, their efforts profoundly affected those around them.

This led me to realize that even small efforts can tremendously help someone when they are in need of it the most.

We never know what’s going on in another person’s reality. All it may take is being present and listening to them. Or, if we have knowledge to help them move along on their journey, we can offer it lovingly and without conditions or judgment. We may not realize how sharing a bit of ourselves can give someone the strength and courage to continue on.

It’s the thoughtful actions that occur at the right time in someone’s life that will keep you in their hearts years after you’d interacted with them.