When I retired, I struggled trying to figure out my purpose in life. I always felt a strong purpose being a teacher. But now, what was I, a retired teacher, past her prime? What was my important purpose now? I had struggled with this for several years.
I am reading a book called, Four Thousand Weeks, by Oliver Burkeman, and a chapter called “Cosmic Insignificant Therapy”, really helped me come to a realization. There are only so many “greatest of all time” individuals in the world. Most of us will never be a famous singer, author, painter, or hero of the world we wanted to be.
According to Burkeman, our lives really don’t matter much more than a flicker when it comes to the universe. He believes that thinking we need a huge super important purpose, is grandiose thinking.
For years I have been holding myself to a standard I cannot meet. I worked so hard to be a perfect teacher, not realizing I could never live up to that standard, and just being a good teacher was ok. In fact, that pressure I put on myself just increased my drinking problem.
When I look around at people I admire, they are just ordinary people. Not super anything. They are kind, loving, generous, and helping when they can. This means, I too can be a regular person, who lives as best she can showing kindness to people around me. My purpose is as ordinary as making Mr. UT happy. It is as mundane as volunteering one day a week. It is as normal as keeping a neat house. (But not cooking! LOL) Maybe just a lot of little purposes.
If all I ever do at this time of my life, is to make the world a little better for someone, that is all that is needed.
Into the air, I send my prayers,
For people hurting everywhere,
Hoping they help to do their part,
And bring healing to many hearts.
With Snow, but Warmer Sun,
On Day 2754,
(Photos from past March Walks)