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Two simple ways to make the world more livable

Most of us go through life living a simple, ordinary one. Do we dream of changing the world around us, doing something big, and making an impact? Then an afterthought comes in, doubts as to what we can, simple, ordinary human beings, do to make an impact. How can we change the world?

Trust me when I say that everyone, I mean everyone here, can change the world. The only problem is that many of us are not aware of the power that lies within us. We may impact the very few around us, our immediate family, a few neighbors, and a couple of friends, and do our bit of charity. We then die off. What have we achieved?

Do we have to achieve anything? How then are we going to change this world, if we don’t think of achieving anything? How?

The two simplest answers I have got are, being oneself and being kind. I agree that most of us have been ourselves and kind. But is it with consciousness? Are we mindful of our words and actions or are we just living, day to day, situation to situation?

We get on with the rut of our lives – wake up, work, eat, rest, sleep, and sometimes procreate, on repeat mode. You may ask me where in this rat race will you get the time to change this world? My answer would be, we have a chance every second we breathe, every waking minute of ours. We have a chance to change the world in every word we utter or do not utter and, in every action, we do or do not do.

The next question would be how can our words or actions change the world. The world around us, our world, is a piece of the entire world. It’s one of the pieces in the jigsaw puzzle. What we do and say has ripple effects. We all know that if the bees died, the entire life on planet earth would end in 4 years or so. So, if a tiny insect could impact the world thus, imagine how much influence each of us will have.

Being ourselves – Follow our hearts, what is most comfortable for us, what makes us happy, and what we feel is right. Allow others to be that too. If we follow the crowd and do things because of ‘what will people say’ or because our parent or spouse may not like it, then the bitterness that grows in the deepest recesses of our hearts, will start eating us.

How can we be kind to others when we are not kind to ourselves? Buy, pick and keep only things that give you joy – be it clothes, Knick knacks, books, jewelry, furniture, friends, spouse, anything, and everything. When we look around in our homes, lives, and surroundings, most things should bring us joy. We create that joy for ourselves. Imagine a world full of joyful human beings. Would it not be different from what it is now? Happy people create happy spaces, and happy families and spread happiness. Would that not be changing the world?

If we adjusted to every whim and fancy of the people around us, there would be no end to it. Demands are never-ending. Be who we are and the world will adjust to us. People end up accepting that this is who we are. Just by being ourselves, we make changes around us. If we are conscious about the words we use and the actions we do, and how it is impacting our lives, others’ lives, we will choose with much care.

Times are different from what it was for our mothers, ourselves, and now for our daughters. We have seen our mothers being victims of patriarchy and in many instances, even torch bearers of patriarchy. But there were some who wanted better circumstances for their daughters. They made changes, tiny changes, in the things around them. They paved way for us to equip ourselves to pave a more equal path for our daughters. Today, when we see our daughters enjoying freedom and opportunities, we can pat our own backs.

Very many of us have worked hard to make tiny changes in the way we have lived our lives. We have chosen to speak louder, pursue what we want, make money, put our foot down where needed, asserted, when necessary, been called difficult, left abusive relationships, and achieved more… we have paved a path for our daughters to be bold, assertive, joyful and freer than us or our mothers. These changes happened because a handful of people decided to do things differently, their way.

So, go ahead and live a life with the full awareness that whatever we do can impact the lives around us. Be kind to yourself first, by not letting anyone be unkind to you; by taking care of your needs; by making yourself a priority.

That tiny change will teach our daughters to be kind to themselves and teach our sons too, kindness. Are we not then making changes to the world?

It is not just the earth-shattering huge things that matter. Changes happen even with the tiniest of actions and words.

She writer Sajitha Rasheed, is the Founder and Chief Mentor, of Mind Mojo