“Dream a little dream of me” ~ The Beautiful South*
Or, as defined by my dictionary
Dream (n): an imagined series of events, an aspiration, goal, aim
I woke this morning with the feeling my dream was trying to tell me something and also a strong desire to contact my friend Kim to say hello and see how she was. As I tried to decipher the strands of my dream and work out what they meant, a message popped up from my phone from Kim. It was a message of love and appreciation and it felt to me like a sign that the skeins of thought from my dream needed to be untangled and shared. So here they are.
Give to charity, invest in the Arts, send someone a card. Giving doesn’t have to be money; it can be time, it can be donating upwanted items, it can be assistance of a practical level. That’s not to say rush out of your door and volunteer or sign up to a direct debit for every charity that crosses your path, the vast majority of us are simply unable to do this. But many of us can find the time to give a friend a call and talk with them, maybe pass the time of day or listen if they feel they need to unburden themselves. Giving, be it of ourselves or in a more material way, can help us to think of others and, in turn, make us feel better about ourselves. And what part of society couldn’t use a little more of that?
You are unique. No-on has your specific knowledge and skillset. No-one has your specific experiences. So why not share them? Why not tell people about them? If your passion is camponology or mountain safety then share what you know. If you are great at building websites why not contact the campanologists or mountaineers and see if they would like a website to help share their knowledge? I know things of privacy law, the making of cocktails, the lighting of movies; all because I know people who took the time to write things down or talk about them, and I was interested in finding out. Sometimes I wish I could stand in a library with my arms outstretched and have knowledge pour into me. But I can’t, not least because I’d probably be thrown out. But I can absorb what others tell me. And, in turn, share my knowledge, my passions, with others. We all have so much, in so many ways, so let’s spread it around.
If you don’t like someone that’s fine. If you don’t like an opinion that’s fine too. But to insult, deride, make personal remarks, that’s less fine. It’s disrespectful to the person, the situation, and also to you. Better to walk away than engage in unpleasant mud-slinging. Consider your environment; respect the space by using a bin and not spitting on the floor. Give your seat to another on the tube if they look like they need it more, not because chivalry or age, just because it is the decent, respectful thing to do. In short, do unto others as you would done by. If you don’t want to be sworn at or about, hurt, abused or ignored, then don’t do those things to others. And don’t stand for them being done to you, by others or in your own head. You are worth more than that.
Don’t sell yourself short
I’ll say it again: you are unique. Why should you hide your light under a bushel? Unless, of course, you are creating an art installation, in which case carry on, my bushel-lighting friend. You have a voice that should not be silenced because you believe you don’t know enough or because X is better. X is great at being X. But you are perfect at being you. No-one else can do that. So let the light that is you shine out in the world.
This was the message in my dream. I’m giving it to you to read, sharing it as food for thought, and respecting myself enough to say that I have a voice and I wanted this to be heard.
Interested in your thoughts, as always.
*many versions of this song have been recorded, I’m going with the one in my head