I sometimes approach tasks in life like a one-armed plate spinner. I run from this task to that task and just try to keep all of the plates spinning at once hoping they won’t come crashing down around me.
Sometimes, though, the tasks pile up in what truly can feel like an avalanche. And the weight of the collective volume can be overwhelming.
On those days, I look at a worn fortune, taped on my computer screen, a remnant of a long-ago Chinese meal. It’s small type on the simple white strip reads:
No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.
Tasks can mount against us, piling up in heaps that even a metropolitan-sized snow plow would have trouble with. But the tasks, and especially the individuals who bring them before us, are just that — individuals. I keep my paper fortune on my computer to remind me that each encounter is but one single snowflake. And even when I’m feeling the most snowed under, it’s not necessarily any one snowflake’s fault.
For the most part, the people around us are just people who are living their own lives with their own struggles. They’re not out to get us or to pile more and more weight on us with a goal of breaking us (at least I hope not!).
We can respond to the snowflakes that people bring into our lives the way we do in winter — running full speed to the grocery store for milk and bread while complaining about how much we hate the snow — or maybe we could try dancing among the falling flakes with the wonderment of a child.
My point is that we get to decide how we’ll respond to life. We can choose to see the magic and the beauty it holds. Wouldn’t you rather enjoy the magic than gripe about the cold?
Do you have a favorite fortune or saying you keep handy to remind you of an important lesson you’ve learned or thought that you want to remember? We’d love to hear about it in the comments below.