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When Things Get Hard… Think Small.

It’s been a hard and heavy week. The weight of the news some days can make you forget that we're also still a year into navigating our way through a global pandemic. While each day has glimmers of hope, it can be hard to see sometimes with all of the bad news - violence, hate, shootings, social & racial injustice.

When so much feels so big and so outside of our control, it can be easy to feel discouraged and overwhelmed by how much work there is to do. How can we make meaningful change when it feels hard to even just get through a regular day? One of the best methods I've found for re-centering myself when I’m feeling this way is to think small...

First, I think about how small my world really is and how small I am as just one human being. I often go back and re-read this excerpt from Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot. It always helps me remember that no matter how BIG and permanent something feels at that moment…when considering the bigger world I am a part of, what's troubling me is very small and only temporary. Oddly, thinking about how insignificant I am makes me feel less afraid of thinking bigger and acting more boldly.

I also pause to think about the things that make me happy-- I try to focus on tiny details about specific things that make me smile. One of the most consistent sources of joy for me is my dog, Zig Zag. I love thinking about all the things I love about her. I smile thinking about how big her eyes get when she licks food off a spoon, how she gallops when she's running along a sandy beach or how peacefully she smiles when she's sitting in a sunbeam. Thinking about happiness on a very small scale makes me appreciate how many more things there are to be grateful for and appreciate every day. It also helps me remember to notice these happy moments so they don't just fade into the background.

How do you re-center yourself when things feel overwhelming? What are some of the littlest delights in your life?


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