Did you ever practice a morality scenario in school? My teacher friend told me about this one:
You’re the captain of a lifeboat that only holds 7 more people. There are 8 left on the ship. There is a doctor, a stay at home mom, a fitness coach with a terminal illness, a lawyer who cheats, a mailman and so on... Who do you choose to leave behind?
My first thought was, yikes.
Aside from this being an incredibly grim scenario for children to approach, it also highlights the way our society values (and stereotypes) people. It explores how we to use the values given to us by our society and assign worth to someone based on qualities about them and how they spend their time. Does this sound familiar?
Do you already know what someone will usually say when you tell them how you spend your time? “That’s so cool!!” or “Oh… that’s nice” or “Well, someone needs to do it!” or “That must be so rewarding” or “That must be nice while you look for a real job”.
We culturally tend to place value on people based on a single trait that has a status in society.
Did you know, we can train an animal to recognize the difference between large and small? They can learn that a baseball is smaller than a basketball. They can learn that a nickel is larger than a dime. However, we can’t train them to recognize value. They do not grasp that a dime is of greater value than a nickel. This is a human understanding.
In the same way - though the ‘things about us’ may look bigger or smaller next to another, this says nothing of our value.
The truth is, value is innate. You are valuable. Not the thing about you.
And because it is you who is valuable:
When you put your energy towards something - you create value.
I personally believe that we actually will not know in our lifetime, the kind of impact we really have. Like the concept of the butterfly effect, do you know if your time spent cleaning the kitchen does not bring an actual effect to the world?
I say it’s time we view all of our actions as valuable. Valuable enough to be the drip, drip, drip that moves the tides of the ocean.
What I hope this space encourages you see, is that your energy, your efforts, they are valuable… since you are.