I had a startling revelation today that I seem to have somehow spent my whole life thinking that I’m unimportant and don’t matter. More specifically that my feelings don’t matter. That I have been operating under the mistaken belief that it was more important to keep everyone around me satisfied than it was to take care of my own happiness. Where I got this wonderfully warped belief from I have no idea, and I have no particular desire to look into it, either. But this sense of my own unimportance has literally directed my life; manifesting in little ways – like making it a habit of conforming to other people’s desires rather than asserting my own, and bigger and more harmful ways – such as denying myself not only the expression of, but also the experience of my feelings in relationship, because I either believed it would hurt the other person’s feelings or was painfully aware that ‘Now is not a good time’ for them. (When is it ever?)
I’m shocked at the extent of my self-abandonment and how deeply this sense of my own unimportance has penetrated, seeping into every pore of my body and every aspect of my life. No wonder I have always had a problem with self-confidence! How can you hope to be confident, when you don’t place any worth or value on yourself?
It suddenly hit me today: I Am Important. I was listening to a seminar and this one tiny sentence about how we are all an important part of the Universe’s design literally jumped out and knocked me over the head with an impact akin to being hit over the head with a wet fish.
All of a sudden, I got it: I am important.
But more; I am precious, treasured, valued, cherished, worthy, deserving, beautiful, amazing, and oh so very, very perfect. Just as I am. With all my faults and flaws; with all the parts of me that are still ‘in process.’ Because there is no one quite like me amongst the 7 billion other people on this planet. No one with my unique set of skills, gifts and winning (and some not-quite-so-winning) flaws. No one that can touch the lives of the people around them in precisely the way that I can.
And if this goes for me, it goes for all of us. Not only am I important and precious. You are important and precious. We are all important and precious, each and every one of us, all of the time; even when we don’t know it yet.
Each of us, in our own particular uniqueness, bring a set of gifts to the world that only we can bring, Our every word and action send ripples out into the world. And we have absolutely no idea how far these ripples can travel, but I would take a guess that it’s far beyond what we can conceive.
I’ve often thought I have an over-active imagination, but I don’t think this scenario is too far-fetched. Perhaps because I smiled at the lady who was serving me in the supermarket and greeted her in a friendly manner, she let another car in in front of her in heavy traffic on her way home at lunchtime. Maybe the driver of that car ‘paid it forward’ by helping her elderly neighbor with her shopping bags, and that elderly neighbor then felt moved to phone her daughter to apologize for the petty argument they’d been having. Maybe that short phone call gave the daughter enough head space to notice that her son seemed unusually quiet when he got home from after school and to ask him if he was okay. And so it goes on. Imagine how important that moment of loving attention was to that child and to the future that he is going to create. And, albeit in a very convoluted and indirect way, it may all have started with a simple smile and a friendly ‘hello.’
So know your worth. Know your value. Know your importance. Know the significance of the ‘little things.’ You are the only one who can change the world in the unique way that you already are, one small word and one small action at a time.
I’ve decided to make a list each night before going to bed of five things that I did that day that were important because they contributed to the world in a positive way. I’m hoping that this simple routine will help me to be more aware of my words and actions and to consciously send out more loving words and actions into the world. I invite you to join me. Let’s change the world one small word and action at a time. We all have that in our power. And in the owning of that power we realize our importance.