Welcome to Part Two of this 5 day expose` of why I think YOU Matter!
Let's get to it...
You Can Make A Difference:
You can make a huge difference by just being you. What you bring to the world is your own uniqueness. You don't have to be famous, rich, well educated, or look like a model.
It doesn't matter how old you are, where you live, or what skills you're capable of.
We all have the capacity to bring something beautiful to the world. Small actions can change the lives of others in ridiculously profound ways.
“You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.”
For the last 4 years, I've been part of an organization called Rotary International. We volunteer in various ways, and strategise about how we can raise money to help others locally and all over the planet. Just yesterday, I got up at 4.30 am to help run a catering station at a massive event organised by the club. I had to be on site by 5.30 am, and my shift ended at 11.00 am. The tent was full of volunteers giving their time to help raise funds for beneficiaries in our community.
Now, I am NOT a morning person. I've always been a night owl. But, the joy I got from being a part of something bigger than myself, for the benefit of those less fortunate than myself, was undeniable. The fact I have a bachelors degree didn't matter. My age didn't matter (there were people in age from teenagers to 70s helping out). Where I came from didn't matter. The fact I could stand and cook bacon at a massive bar-b-cue for several hours was what mattered!!
No matter how you feel about yourself..... lonely, overwhelmed, fed-up, joyless, stressed.... I find helping others is like a shortcut to happiness. It makes you feel good. It makes you feel valued. And, YOU are.
As the free desktop wallpaper below so aptly states...... (click the image to download it as a wallpaper)
Actions Are Free:
Your influence on the lives of others can be astounding. A kind word just when it's needed. A smile for those whom smiles seem absent. Really listening to someone who feels invisible.
All these things are free to give, yet can make a huge difference to a person at their lowest ebb, someone who's losing hope, a stranger who's looking sad.
As a teacher, I know what the children in my care value the most is my interest in them. My willingness to form a relationship and be curious about their lives. Truly holding their gaze and listening while they tell me about their ideas or difficulties.
By letting them know THEY matter, it means I matter in their lives. I can do something of worth.
Never forget that YOU matter!
Action is the greatest way to demonstrate this. Everything you do has a consequence, and the consequences you kick-start for others can grow the tiniest of ripples into a wave of goodness.
Read this profoundly moving article by Alexandra Franzen (please do), for a story of how the simplest of things (getting your hair cut), can change your life. This will not be what you think.
Little Acts Of Kindness Can Be Done By Anyone:
Here are two gorgeous videos from You Tube. I've used both in my classroom (and yes, they're both a bit cheesy), but I think they're just as pertinent for we grown-ups as they are for children (the message is still a good one). The second is actually an ad, but is beautiful none-the-less.
Now, I'm not advocating you need to give away money like the Thai guy, because you can make someone's day without that. I'm also not advocating you go above and beyond and exhaust yourself. That would simply defeat the purpose.
But, I am saying that little acts of kindness can be carried out by ANYONE. And that means you!
Feeling good about ourselves is so often about what we can actually do for others.
And, you never know when your smallest of actions, will result in something lovely and ongoing. What seems small to you, may seem almost like a sign to others. Perhaps we should all envision ourselves as 'wearers of the vest' (see the first video link above).
“You cannot hold a torch to light another’s path without brightening your own.”
Even something as simple as telling someone they matter to you can be momentous. As a teacher, I try to do this with my students.
Check out the video for how this can play out with kids (from the bottom of my teacher heart - please watch it)!
As a parent, how utterly thrilling for your children to hear this and feel the truth of it.
As a friend, how delightful and heartwarming to hear these words from another.
Simple things, simple actions, do matter. You can do and say these things, so YOU matter.
- Your actions make a difference.
- No matter where you are, or who you are, you can start now.
- Without you, the world would be a lesser place.
- The smallest of actions can make a profound difference to someone's life.
- Your words, your smile, listening.... these can be pivotal moments to others.
- You may never know just how much meaning you bring to others via simple words and actions... but be assured you do.
- Click here to download your desktop wallpaper from above.
- Click here to download a PDF of the image quotes featured above.
Until our next installment, remember...
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?”
(Martin Luther King Jnr.)
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