7:16 A.M. Tuesday, May 31, 2011

My lunch was made last night, so, hopefully, I can get this written and still be on time for work.

It’s a very busy time for me right now, big meeting coming up tomorrow, plus lots of other CUPE business to be taken care of before the end of June.  I’m doing my best to stay on top of it, but I have to be honest, I’d much rather just let it all go and spend my time outside in my yard or on working on jobs around this house.  There is just so much to do and never enough time to do it all.

I have, however, gotten better at not stressing about it.  I do what I can and tell myself to be satisfied that I’ve done the best I can.  The world is not going to fall apart, I am not going to be tarred and feathered if something slips, and,  in the end, I’m the only person who’s really going to care.  Everyone else is as busy with their lives as I am with mine.  Let’s face it — I’m just not that important.

Now, when I say that, I am not being self-deprecating.  I simply mean that in the big scheme of things, my little life — my worries, my failings and faults, my successes and strengths — these things are really only important to me and to a very select few family and friends.  And even then, the importance of my daily life is not uppermost in their lives.  It’s their lives and the lives of their children, spouses, and significant others that matter most.  And that is how it should be.

Each of us wants to be thought of as important.  We want to make an imprint on the world, we want, in the end, to be remembered.  But history books only have so much space, and that space has to be allotted for the truly important.

I think that we’ve been seduced by media, in all its forms, into seeking recognition for our individual self-importance.   And though I wholeheartedly believe that each of us must believe in our own self-worth and have a strong sense of who we are, I don’t believe that outside of our own little circle of family and friends, we should be concerned about what the rest of the world thinks.

Being present in your own life, making a difference to those who matter most in your life, and being, for the most part, happy in all that you do, that should be what is truly important.  Not whether your name is mentioned in a newspaper, or your face appears on a list of ‘volunteers of the year’, whether or not you are celebrated at a community event, or named as chair of some committee — though  these are all wonderful achievements, they shouldn’t be the driving force behind any good deed.

Shows like Secret Millionaire and  Undercover Boss  are just two examples of vehicles that promote people seeking the sort of recognition I’m talking about.  I can’t stand either of these shows simply because they are a showcase for people greedy for public recognition and a platform for them to promote their self-importance.  The real heroes of those shows are the unsung individuals who were doing all the hard work before the ‘celebrities’ appeared (in disguise).

So, I guess what I’m saying is:  Be important, but be important to those who matter most in your life first, then be important without wanting or needing recognition.  If recognition comes, then, you’ve probably earned it through action, not self-promotion, and that will likely mark you as someone to be remembered.

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