There is so much pressure on us today to be big.
To be where it’s at and know all the right people. To make our mark and have history remember us forever. To do something spectacular for the entire universe to see and appreciate. To explode onto the scene, any scene, and have that be where it all started. To stretch and bend and do beyond what anyone has done before.
Our world today is enormous. Superquadruplemegahuge. We’re hyperstimulated, hyperinformed, hyperconnected. We have to be everywhere, do everything, know everyone; make the most money, broker the best deal, find the best career, go to the best school, give the most effort, win the most clashes; be the best friend, cook the tastiest food, have the cleanest house, parent the best kids, lose the most weight, be the best lover; write the best pieces, be the most innovative, make the wittiest comments, think the deepest thoughts, find the best ending, be the most creative.
What happened to being small?
To cultivating a close circle of intimate friends. To perfecting your craft with love and patience. To being quiet and embracing the silence. To being unplugged and unreachable. To finding joy in nature and personal relationships. To knowing yourself. To thriving in love because it’s your world. To just be-ing.
The value of locality, centrality, commonality feels like it’s been either severely muted or lost to all but the select few who are too unfortunate to be big or who are (ironically) wealthy enough to live small. We’ve inverted our social paradigm so that it tells us that to fly under the radar, to be offline, unplugged, disconnected in any sense is bad. That we are bad if we decline the “challenges” of bigness. If we should decide to reel in our feelers and create a small world, centered around what and who we love best, we are scorned, shunned, and worse, pitied.
Be small. And be proud to be small.
We all want to make our mark; it’s imprinted in our genes to do so. But remember that you don’t have to let bigbigbig run your life. Purpose is held within us, and its voice can only be heard when you’re still enough to listen. The best way to leave a legacy is not to live up to the expectations of being big, but to place worth, value, meaning, and love into your own journey. The rest will come.