Every few weeks my siblings like to text over some sort of thought-provoking messages.
Usually they’re quotes like “I say yes to the world because saying no is much scarier,” or “if you chase two rabbits, you will not catch either one” (but what if you like chasing pigs?? :)), but the last one was actually a question. And one which I almost ignored ‘cuz it was a lot harder than it looks!
Here’s what was asked:
“What’s the greatest gift you could give to the world?”
Seems easy at first, but the more I thought about it the more I wasn’t sure. My family started rattling off answers fairly quickly and they were all fine – “to love unconditionally” and “to help others” – but I wanted to actually spend some time really thinking about it and seeing if anything clicked.
And, ironically enough, it was just that in the end that I came up with: Attention.
Paying attention is the best thing we can give to the world!
Attention to our friends, our family, strangers, attention to our actions and how it affects everyone, attention to how we interact with our land, our stuff, our health/goals/dreams, everything. How much better our surroundings would be if we spent more time slowing down and looking up! Even just giving 30 – dedicated – seconds to someone, or something, can make all the difference in the world! And it’s something we all have the capacity to do, rich or poor.
So that’s what I texted them back: attention. And I could tell it caught them off guard because who spends two hours trying to answer a text?? Haha… But I did feel awfully clever afterwards :) Also “deep,” as my brother declared.
Then, of course, I started wondering what the greatest thing we could do for our wallets was? Was it saving? Investing better? Budgeting?
The more I thought about it, the more I kept coming back to that same answer of “attention.” After all, how could you do anything with money if you don’t first stop and really think about it? Attention seems to be the spark that all good things come out of. You may not always find what you’re hoping for, or accidentally focus on the wrong things (getting rich fast, chasing other peoples’ dreams), but in the end all goals get accomplished because you took that very first start: you cared enough to stop and think.
The action you take will be the catapult of it all, but you need the attention first before anything comes. So that’s my answer for your wallet as well :)
What about you? What do you think the best gift you could give the world is? What about the best gift to your wallet? Are your actions matching your beliefs?
James Frick once stated that if you want to see someone’s priorities, take a look at where they’re spending their money and you’ll find them. I agree, and it works even better with time. If you want to see someone’s priorities, take a look at where they’re spending all their time! That speaks volumes right there… And I have some work to do on this, myself.