Welcome Sandy

We often use the word welcome or a form of it in our conversations with others.  “Welcome!  Welcome to my home.  You’re welcome.”  We see the welcome center signs at rest stops along interstate highways, offering a place to feel safe and tend to one’s needs.  States in the US have signs at their borders welcomng us.  Often, ‘welcome’ is a greeting, a kind of invitation to come into one’s world.  We say it with enthusiasm, eager for the engagement.  Sometimes, it’s non-verbal:  open arms, a wave of the hand saying come here, even a hug.  A summoning to enter, to come along, to join in.  Feeling ‘welcome’ is heart-warming to the invitee, who unbeknown to you, might just need a bit of unexpected TLC.

How welcoming you are?  Do you exude welcoming feelings to those you encounter?  What words do you use?  How do you say them?  What does your body language express?  It seems that in the world we live in today where poeple are more on edge and into thier own little worlds, becoming more welcoming might help in a small way to reach out to, touch those we know and those we encounter only briefly in a caring way.  It might, in some way, create a sense of belonging, connection that might be sorely needed at that time.

So what might being welcoming look like?  Perhaps a smile or kind word to the checkout clerk who’s grumpy.  What about an honest compliment, “You’re really quick at the register.  I don’t think I could do that. (I know I  couldn’t.)”  Maybe an arm around the shoulder of a friend who needs comfort.  A wave to someone you see that isn’t a close friend.  What about your facial expression when you meet someone new?  Let it show your interest in the person.  A nod of the head to someone you pass by acknowledging them.  An offer to listen to someone you know who is facing a challenge of some sort.  These small actions might well make a big difference to the recipient.

The thing is, we never know for sure what is going on within a person’s mind or heart, whether a friend or a passer-by.  If we each decide to be alert and aware and notice those around us and what is going on around us, we could each become a daily, one-man/woman welcoming committee, ‘making the day’ for many.  We’d be living from the heart, which is the best place to operate from.  Just think of the collective effect we would have!

Heartful blessings,



How do you make someone feel welcome?  What does that look like?

genuine interest in the well-being of another, a friend, a colleague, someone you’ve just met.


So Welcome

6 Responses to “Feeling Welcome”

  • Darlene Nadeau says:

    Warm greetings Sandy,
    it is wonderful to read your blog…and a beautiful reminder to smile, open arms and heart.

    • Sandy says:

      Thanks, Darlene, for commenting on my blog! Yes, we all need to “…smile, open arms and heart!” I hope all is well in your world!

  • Martha Eddy says:

    Hi Sandy – its interesting to open my inbox and find this topic. I just led a workshop in Seattle (I’m visiting from my NYC office) and shared a clip from my EyeOpenersDVD that is posted on http://www.EyesOpenMinds.com – it show me teaching 1st and 2nd graders to trace the first letter of their names using finger spelling and eye tracking. While they do this they say their names. I emphasized the importance of repeating the activity including their names at least twice in order for each to fee welcomed into our shared community. We note how they nod, sit up a little taller, write with a bit more energy the second time around. It is this response of self-worth that is so important and sets a tone of caring in our classroom. Enough so that perhaps we best just do it all again one more time! Hope you and your readers will check out this online resource. Thanks for your inspiration.

    • Sandy says:

      Hello, Martha!

      How nice it was to receive your response, Martha. I love your finger spelling activity as a ‘welcoming’ activity fostering self-worth and tracking all at the same time. The classroom climate is so very important for academic and social success. I’m glad to have this link and will share it with others. I admire your wonderful work!

  • Tracie Ely says:

    Hi Sandy
    I don’t know if you remember me but I was in Rosemary’s workshop at Kripalu a few years back. My mom,Debbie Olsted, works at the front desk there. I am so glad to see your blog and read up on all of your latest news. I want to say that your Grandson is so cute. I love the picture in the leaves. I am living in Georgia still and am working at a preschool where I teach 4 and 5 yr olds. I am looking into possibly starting a teen program that focuses on nutrition, meditation,and yoga. Do you have any resources or ideas that would help me start this program?
    Thank you,
    Tracie Ely

    • Sandy says:

      How very nice to hear from you, Tracie! Yes, I remember you well and get an update on you each time I come to Kripalu.

      It’s exciting to hear about the program you are planning to start. I’ll give it some thought. Off the cuff, you might like to get them into using mudras for self-regulation i.e. calming when anxious, boosting their energy when lethargic. My Integrative Yoga Therapy teacher, Joseph LePage, has
      written a wonderful book on mudras, very complete looking at chakras, postures, the koshas or levels of being etc for each mudra that he presents. I think teens would benefit
      from an easy, quick way to change their state-of-being. For younger children, I have a CD that just came out, Happy to Be Me: Mudra songs for Kids, that teaches hand positions for several mudras through song. I created the verses and two musicians have set them to music. The songs are fun to listen to as well as being instructive. That’s a start. I’ll see what else I can come up with.

      Best in all that you do!

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