Have You Mattered?

Posted: May 12, 2012 in Uncategorized

I’ve been watching a series of videos the last couple of days, videos that are making me think a lot about my life and what I want to do with it.  I’ll be sharing more about this in the next few days and give you a link to the videos.  But for today, I wanted to talk about one of the questions that has been going though my head… Have you mattered today?  Have you made a difference in this world?

I haven’t done anything extraordinary today.  I haven’t pulled someone from a burning building.  I haven’t secretly paid off anyone’s medical bills.  I haven’t arrested a child molester.  I haven’t cured cancer, invented micro loans or brokered world peace.  So how have I mattered?  How have I made a difference in this world?

  • I took Cee out to breakfast at a new restaurant a friend of ours just opened.  I supported my friend not only with my money, but by stopping and chatting with her a few minutes to let her know she had our emotional support as well.
  • I went to the market to do our weekly grocery shopping and smiled at every stranger I saw.  A smile is free and you always have one with you.  I brightened up a lot of people’s day.
  • I said “excuse me” every time I had to walk in front of someone in the market.  Most people don’t pay attention but every now and then I see someone smile because they, too, believe in ordinary civility.  It takes so little to use the magic words of “please”, “thank you” and “excuse me” but all too few of us seem to do it any more.
  • I brought my old bags back and used them again, recycling them to keep them out of the landfill.
  • I wrote a letter to two friends whose mother had died not long ago, letting them know I was thinking of them on Mother’s Day, knowing that it will make their grief more painful.  On Friday I contacted two people I worked with who are grieving their mothers.
  • I mentally thought of, held and prayed for the children in my grief support groups who are spending Mother’s Day without their mothers.  I know how hard this day will be for them.
  • I bought some flowers to put in my front yard.  I hope they’ll make people smile.
  • I wrote this message to you, knowing it will make you smile and make you think about all the little ways you make a difference in this world.

I hope you’ll add your comments to my list by making a difference in your world today.

Many blessings!


  1. Northern Narratives says:

    I am knitting mittens for donation to children who will need them this winter.

  2. I planted trees. Who knows? Maybe a bird will make a nest in them someday. Meanwhile they’ll help oxygenate the world.
    Nice post. If everyone did their bit, the world would have to become a better place.

    • I love trees. That’s what is the best thing about living in western Oregon. The trees. I’m sure birds will nest in them. They’ll provide shade and habitat for many living things. They’ll clean the air and help all of us breathe better. Thank you for that.

  3. bluebee says:

    Lovely post, Chris – I particularly like what you say here about civility – it doesn’t take much effort to be civil and pleasant to others and it makes everyone’s day that much brighter

  4. Judee says:

    Chris, I love what you say about smiling. Sometimes that’s all it takes to change a person’s day – including one’s own. And being polite, saying excuse me. Sometimes we forget the little things we do that can make a difference, small acts of kindness or even just listening to a friend, or responding to an email. Hey, does leaving a comment on their blog count too? 😉 Thanks for a lovely, thought provoking post.

    • Leaving a comment on their blog absolutely counts! LOL
      Just listening to a friend… that is my favorite. Not giving advice back (unless it is asked for) but just being with someone is one of the greatest gifts we can give. We are all living in an increasingly isolated world and we need to reverse that.

  5. You certainly did make me smile Chris, amd I still am. Thank yiu. You also made me feel that being mattered by smeone is such a special thing. The sparks of love that keep this world working. Against all odds.

    I think the flowers you bought for your yard have actually already created smiles. I cannot imagine Cee not smiling at the gesture, and it makes me smike yet again because it causes me to think of the three plant six-packs and one 6″ Calla Lilly on my deck needing to be planted now.

    • One lesson that Cee taught me is that often we don’t even know that we have mattered to someone else. Just by living in our truth and putting that energy out into the world around us we often lift people up and change the direction of their day.

      • Touche Chris ~ Going forward into the day with an agenda of adding sunshine to every lofe you meet is a beautiful way to move through the world. I personally like the challenge.

  6. eof737 says:

    Yes, I have… and hope others have too.
    ღ˚ •。* ♥ ˚ ˚✰˚ ˛★* 。 ღ˛° 。* °♥ ˚ • ★ *˚ .ღ 。*˛˚ღ •˚ ˚…Sending sprinkles of Love to You: Happy Mother’s Day! ˚ ✰* ★˚. ★ *˛ ˚♥* ✰。˚ ˚ღ。* ˛˚ ♥ 。✰˚* ˚ ★ღ ˚ 。✰ •* ˚ ♥

  7. ansuyo says:

    Something to think about here. I’m not sure I pay attention to the difference I make in quite this way.

  8. What a beautiful post, Chris. The little things do matter.

  9. Beautiful post. A lot of us forget that we do make a difference through the little things we do every day. This is a great reminder 🙂

  10. Judy says:

    Chris….what a lovely post. We need to STOP what we are doing …(life gets so busy)….and think about this very thing….more often.
    It’s true: “the little things in life DO count”….and make a big difference. Thanks for this super post.

  11. Sunshine says:

    What a lovely, thoughtful post, Chris. Thanks!
    When we help friends who are going through a change in their lives, for example, adult children finally leaving home to start their own lives, it can be helpful to be there for support…that’s how I spent my day. Thanks again!

  12. Gobetween says:

    When I look back at this week, all I can think of is the routine that I am stuck in. Yet my mother sees it differently and was telling my brother yesterday that I take care of her and that I do really nice things for her. All I did today was connect with someone online who is very lonely and ill and hopefully made them smile. The point of my comment is sometimes we do not realise how important the little things we do are to other people around us.

  13. nelson RN says:

    I don’t know but I got teary eyed on that part when you wrote letters to your friends whose mothers died not long ago. That is very touching, and I’m sure your friends do appreciate this. These little gestures of kindness do matter, and can make the biggest day of somebody.
    Thanks for the inspiration, Chris.

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