How shiny are the people around you? Your friends? Your family? The people you work with? A while ago, a friend said something that made me think about "shininess" — how wegood things at each other. I her my when meeting in social situations, as I often feel completely . I often feel like I don't know enough, have nothing to say and not . These are people who are deeply passionate about their subject, and have done so much reading and research about it. I however, spend my day laughing at videos of animals doing cute things.
My friend: "You' obviously how you are. Lots of people should for their lack of shininess to reflect this back to you."
Her wordsme . I tried to come back with something : "Oh, that was Old Me. New Me is much better at being less insecure." But in truth, New Me still forgets to check the level of shine in and around her .
In order to not come across as, we're often told to be , and our talents and achievements. Sometimes we're made to feel bad about feeling good. But here was my friend, , reminding me that I — I didn't realise how much the reminder itself mattered, until I heard it. And it felt good. It started a small glow of light inside me, and I began to wonder how I could spread this feeling.
I began to wonder what, or who, in my life was a black hole,this light from me. I began to wonder if I was shiny enough to the people around me — to my friends, family, and students. Some of the black holes can't be avoided, but this is exactly why we need to find those special shiny people, and keep them close.
My friend did more than just remind me that I matter. She reminded me that I've proved to myself that shininess happens, and shininess works. I was reminded about a blog project I started several years ago, which involved publishing a list of things that made me smile that day — for 100 days. I shared each day with friends and family on social media, and to my surprise, so many of them told me ittheir day as well.
Perhaps we don't need a blog for everyday shininess. Maybe we just need to remember to shine for others. Because the more we shine back at each other, the brighter life will be.
The Japan Times ST: September 16, 2016