In all of this it can be easy to get lost. By that I mean our focus narrows to the point where we see barely beyond our own selves and what immediately makes us happy. Sometimes it’s good to take a step back to get a little perspective.
The next time you’re up in a tall building, take a look out a window at your surroundings. Look off in the distance, or down to the ground far below. See the hundreds of people walking or driving around, hurriedly going from one place to another. How much of what they are doing is really important, and how much of it have they convinced themselves is important?
Did they take the time to enjoy anything that morning? A while ago, world class violinist Joshua Bell played his priceless Stradivarius in a DC metro stop during rush hour. One person stopped to listen to him. Now I realize that many of those people were genuinely busy, but one out of the thousands that walked past?
The next time you’re camping or otherwise outside under a clear starry night, take a moment to just look up at the sky. Stare at the stars long enough that you begin to grasp just how big the universe is. Find that constellation you used to look for as a child. Realize that many of those ‘stars’ you’re looking at are actually galaxies. Some of your problems will look a little smaller.
When you’re having a bon-fire and roasting marsh mellows with friends, let the fire mesmerize you like fire can. Watch the flames dance around and let your mind wander. Sometimes you’ll think about the past; you’ll recall memories you hadn’t thought of in years. Sometimes your mind will look to the future, about worries or goals you’ve had in mind but perhaps let slide.
Do you remember that scene in Ratatouille when the food critic says bring him a dish with a little perspective? Do you remember what happens to him when he eats the food? That’s exactly what I’m talking about here.
So don’t lose your perspective. It’s not the end of the world if things didn’t work out exactly as you planned. Grades are important, but they’re not all important. Your job is never more important than your family. Be glad to have a roof over your head and food to eat. A billion people don’t know what that feels like.
It sounds cliché, but there’s a great principle behind the saying to “stop and smell the roses.” We can get so thoroughly distracted by this hamster wheel called life that we don’t even take the time to see what’s right in front of us, like a brilliant musician putting on a free show.
My flight back to my home town is tomorrow!
So I decided to publish the first guest post before leaving.
I wasn't expecting such an intriguing response, but this was just brilliant. It's one of those posts which makes you think. I loved it! So thank you Jay for letting me publish this on my blog.
Share your views and don't forget to check out Jay's blog: Books, Music and Photographs
(He has managed to complete NaNoWriMo, which is a BIG accomplishment, so congrats to him!)