I had a conversation this morning that I think is worth sharing. It holds potential to add genuine value to your life, and somebody else’s!
I was messaging a friend who has been through a particularly bumpy Covid ride over the past 18 months and who recently lost yet another of her close friends. She was really struggling. As many have, and are.
I offered commiserations and then shared some words that spontaneously came to me – rooted in universal wisdom – meant for her in that moment.
She came back to me a short while later about those few words, which only cost me about two minutes to type, saying they made really a big difference – that ‘a few words can change lives in the blink of an eye’. She asked if she could share my words with others, and interestingly, asked me to please do the same. (Which I do here)
This got me thinking about the value of adding value to others. How easy it can be to give, the impact it can make, and how the giver is often the one who gains the most.
First and as requested, I’ll share those few words…
“Some wise men (and probably a whole lot of wiser women) speak about how we create pain and difficulty for ourselves when we label something (especially the present moment) as good or bad. This suggests a mind that wants life to be one way (good) and not another way (bad), which only sets up for stress, pain and misery. Mainly because life does not work like this – life just happens. Always has, always will.
When we fully accept life (this present moment), not labelling but just accepting, embracing and going with the natural ebb and flow of it, we experience the peace, joy and freedom that is always there – beneath the judging mind.
It’s not about throwing our hands in the air and giving up, but instead about surrendering, which is different.
In surrendering to what is, we surrender judgement whilst remaining engaged, in flow and taking relevant action. Each moment is just as it’s meant to be, and it always passes.
Easy to say, worth striving for…
Ps. I’m not the wise man who embodies these words, just someone who resonates with them, and who, at best, does a pretty average job of living them.”
This conversation got me thinking about the value of adding value to others. The idea of doing something really small to make someone’s day (or even life) is not new. Yet it’s definitely important enough and rewarding enough, especially now, to ask again
“what small thing can I can share with someone today – that may add significant value to their life, and joy to mine?”
It’s an easy win for everyone!
As I was in one of my most productive brainstorming places, the shower, the following ideas popped up. Most cost nothing
Before leaving home….
- Pack a warm and genuine smile into your mouth, face and eyes, and give it to someone who could do with it today.Making lunch for the kids or yourself? Make an extra one and go out of your way to feed a hungry kid.
- As you’re dressing, spot that sweatshirt that is not quite nice enough to throw away, but not quite nice enough to wear that often. Take it out and give it to somebody who would absolutely love having it, who will cherish it a lot more than you do.
- Got money? Give a small amount to someone who would consider it a huge amount (and a much-needed relief). Go on, just do it – maybe there really is a natural cycle in life of what-goes-out-comes-back.
- My personal share. Since the first lockdown, I resolved to pay for anything under R100 in cash, and always ask for R5 and R10 denominations as some part of the change. I leave this in my car glovebox, and give to people who are trying to do something for money. Not beggars at traffic lights, but people at traffic lights attempting to sell something or offer a service, or car guards offering their time, rather than just begging. I never spend those R5 and R10’s, they are to give away.
- Offer gratitude to the universe for what you currently have.
- Give someone a compliment that you’ve been thinking, but not yet spoken.
- Thank someone for the value that they’ve added to your life. Maybe a old teacher, coach, friend, an Ex- or whomever.
- Where you deem it ‘Covid-safe’, give more hugs. Real, warm, hugs. And don’t be the first to let go.
- While showering, brushing your teeth or driving, use that free moment to ask ‘what small gesture of value can I add to someone?’ And then act on the idea that comes up.
And thank you for offering your time to read this far. I hope there may be value for some, and that your response may add value to someone else.
(Ps. Writing and sharing this has already made my morning!)