I’ve always been one to plan every moment; to have every second accounted for. But sometimes the greatest experiences can be found in moments of spontaneity.

My day was planned: I had a doctor’s appointment in the city and a meeting for the organization a couple of hours after that. I figured the doctor’s appointment would take some time but as it happened I was finished earlier than expected. I had a couple of hours to kill before my meeting and normally I would find a café to sit in and get some work done in the interim.

However, I happened to have been next to one of my most favorite parts of the city – Lincoln Center. I have a fascination with Lincoln Center and if I had the means I would make my way to the city every night to catch a performance; whether it be a ballet, the philharmonic, an opera, or a Broadway play. I decided to take a look around and was taken aback by its beauty. Although a big fan, I’ve never actually taken a tour around Lincoln Center. So I headed to the information desk and as luck would have it a tour was leaving in just a couple of minutes. I decided to take a couple of hours for myself and headed out on the tour. The tour was one of the most enjoyable I’ve been on in quite some time.

I was accompanied by two other women who were so sweet and pleasant to be around. I knew it was going to be an exciting afternoon. The tour guide was phenomenal. He shared with us his breadth of knowledge about the complex, its history, the art and architecture. The two women and myself enjoyed in thoroughly and I was sad when it ended.

At the end of the tour, one of the women asked the guide if she could give him a tip. He was taken aback and pleasantly surprised. Upon seeing her simple gesture of gratitude, the other woman and myself followed suit. Such a simple act with such a lasting impression! But the kindness didn’t end there.

Very often you are asked after tours to go to the counter and fill out a survey about your experience, but most people never give it a second look. Who has the time to fill out a form? “I’ve already received the service, why would I go back to fill out a form,” most would say. But after seeing the guides appreciation for our token of gratitude, one by one we each headed to the counter to fill out the survey – of course with exceptional reviews.

We said farewell, smiled and headed back into our worlds, but for a moment we took the time to be aware that we are not simply living in a vacuum, but rather we are just a fragment of the puzzle and like a puzzle we are all connected. Life isn’t about getting to where you’re headed in the fastest possible way, but rather it’s about the lives you touch as you make your way there. It’s about recognizing that showing appreciation is important and truly an essential part in human survival. The more we appreciate, the more love, kindness, and respect we create.

Take a few moments as you run through your day to notice the people you are running by. Slow down, smile, connect and realize that life is about the journey not the destination.