Doing our little part
As we age, we develop beliefs. Our brains attempt to create models that predict how the world works.
In their attempts to create certainty out of an ever-changing world (you already notice a problem there), our brains also learn that certain things don't seem to matter when, in fact, they might. Enter learned helplessness.
I recognize how guilty I am of it because of how many good things I have, at times, seen as pointless.
For example recycling.
Or saving just a little bit more water when I take a shower.
Or stopping to listen to some stranger on the street who creeps me out.
Or donating just a little bit to some cause.
I used to think more in the frame of go big or go home.
But you know what? Every little bit helps. In a lot of ways, it's like preventative medicine. Or earthquakes. Or anything chaotically unpredictable: a little contribution seems to make almost no difference. Until you happen to live years longer. Or have healthy teeth in your old age. Or have the earth shake and create a tsunami. Or like that guy in Jurassic Park talks about life and chaos theory.
What's your takeaway? I hope that it's to cheer up and believe. Believe that every little thing helps, even if it doesn't seem that way. And try to prepare yourself with strong emotional associations for times when you lose sight of that connection. You could also think of it as compounded growth :)
Note: this post was inspired by Awaken the Giant Within and the idea that disempowering beliefs truly take us for a downward spiral. Just as sure as empowering ones take us upward.