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  • Writer's pictureLalita Dileep

Creating Significance in Uncertain Times

Casting around for an Answer

Another New Year

2022 is well underway yet many of us are still languishing. The undertow of the pandemic still tugs at us with the variant looming at the edges of our consciousness, impacting our day to day lives. Commerce, socialization, schooling and work being caught in the mist of the unknown with ever shifting scenarios. New Years are usually celebratory, bringing in their wake resolutions, a fresh burst of energy and resolve to embark on all things new ranging from diets, exercise to more far reaching ones like job and relationship changes. Yet so many of us continue dragging ourselves, still unable to shed the vestiges of the pandemic. How can we motivate ourselves and jumpstart the new year without sounding like yet another TV advertisement? Lets glimpse within ourselves and seek some answers.

Despite the uncertain times, we carry an inherent belief in the value of Life’s existence. An inherent belief that pegs our presence on Earth to something significant. But the question remains - What is our purpose? Our significance? Just as we cannot let go of our deep-seated sense that our Life matters, we also know we cannot remain passive in our quest.

Living intentionally

Most of us want to matter. Even if we don’t enunciate it, realize it, we want to be loved, needed, remembered, missed, noticed. In a word all the things that signify our existence was important. In order for that to happen, we need to lead a life that is intentional. Consciously fashion an existence that is as meaningful as possible, not just with regard to ourselves but to the people that constitute our support system. In short a life of significance. In essence leave a mark on Earth, some contribution, an indelible footprint, long after our Time.

“Don’t worry about being successful but work towards being significant and the success will naturally follow”, says Oprah Winfrey. This phrase resonates with me and outlines a roadmap as to how I might navigate my course. It takes away the burden of having to prove something and celebrates the effort. Recognizing the truth that behavior can create its own existence. Regains for me a modicum of empowerment, while at the same time bestowing value for a life well lived.

Ripple effect

We don’t exist in a vacuum. Our behavior also impacts others. By our actions we can affect others in positive and negative ways, so we need to be cognizant, kind, generous and aware. Born, raised and groomed in an era of individualism, it is not easy to adopt the cape of selflessness, but perhaps that is just the need of the hour. Casting around for an answer during these uncertain time is hard but not impossible, we have to preserve and crusade forth. We may not be aware at first but there are many role model around us, we just have to pursue them.

As I seek my personal answers I realize that there is no need for any grand gestures. I may not be the person to lead a country, feature in a film or head a company. But I can be the individual who babysits for a neighbor, volunteers, shares a recipe, reaches out to a stranger, and teaches a skill to someone who needs it. I can also be the person who knits for charity, reads to my grandchildren, creates the family recipe book as an heirloom and be the friend that someone feels comfortable reaching out in the time of need. At another time, be the resource for a friend, help a stranger put away their cart in the parking lot or just pick up the phone and talk to someone who is lonely.

There are so many meaningful actions that can create a ripple effect and spread goodwill, joy and positive energy that reverberates. Simple actions can yield substantial rewards. It distills the fact that relating to people and interacting with them empowers us in ways that enriches us. Our success stems from the fact that we bestow significance on these small gestures that connect and communicate us with those around us, creating a web of relationships that lend meaning, depth, and focus in our lives.

It keeps the human in us alive and relevant. Our answer is simple, let’s forge ahead and keep our partnerships going, continuing to be significant. I look forward to hearing your stories about how you are facing the challenges of the New Year. Let us share, engage and uplift each other.

We are stronger together.


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