Throughout the day today, I observed there to be an epidemic of thankfulness sweeping the cyber world. Facebook, twitter and various other social media sites, where anybody who’s anybody has an account, were increasingly inundated with the start of their “thirty things to be thankful for.” During my run this evening, I decided this was a delightful idea. Before my second mile, I had already come up with thirty things I was whole-heartedly thankful for. This was going to be a piece of cake, right? WRONG-O! It all of a sudden became difficult when I thought, “Well, this is a ‘Revelation while running,’ so this can totally go on my blog.” I started to go over my list again. The first thing, well, I couldn’t put that one, because it might offend someone. The second one, well, that was probably going to make someone sad. The third one, well… WAIT. What was I doing? The people who would be offended by the first one probably don’t read my blog and the people who would be sad by the second one, well, they probably don’t read it either. You know what? Come to think of it, what do I care if they do?
It was at this point that I recalled two things that happened this week:
1) I was told, “You let the petty things get to you too much.”
2) I told someone about my “lists.”
When number one happened, I wasn’t sure quite how to respond. After processing for several hours, I was telling someone a story about earlier in the day. It came around to petty things and I heard myself say, “And then later on she said, ‘You let the petty things get to you too much,’ and she was so right!” That moment was releasing. For some reason, those hours of thought led to this pivotal microcosmic moment: that stuff just doesn’t matter. Moving on.
Number two happened because number one happened. I was so excited about this moment of awareness, I ran to tell someone I knew would appreciate my triumph. She was appropriately excited. I explained to her my three lists. They aren’t “real” lists in the sense that there are not three sheets of paper lying around somewhere collecting dust with names scrawl across fading lines. I hadn’t thought about them in a while, but I’m glad I was reminded of them.
List one: People I hold in such high esteem, their opinion’s matter to me no matter what. Once you’ve made it onto this list, it’s pretty dang near impossible to come off. These people’s opinion of me I value with extremely high regard and I refer to them for counsel. These people will praise me when I’ve done well, coach me and challenge me when I need help and try to redirect me when they can tell I’m going down the wrong road.
List two: This list is a fluid entity: people in consideration for the permanent list, people I consider friends and people I work with/for. I’m going to care about my employer’s opinion of my job performance, I’m going to care that my friends know I’m a good person and enjoy spending time with me and I’m going to care what my significant other thinks of me. Best friends for life will get moved to list one and so will my future husband. People who have toxic intentions will move to list three.
List three: This is a list of people who have behaved in such a way that I need to remind myself that their opinions of me are petty. Being concerned with the opinion of people on this list will bring me down. Focusing on these opinions will lower me to a festering cesspool of negativity in which no good can survive. MOVE ON! Check.
Out of these two interactions, I observed two themes: truth and honesty. The bottom line for today: I’m thankful there are people in my life who can be truly honest with me and people I can be truly honest with.