“No one could make a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little.” Edmund Burke
I have been thinking a lot about that quote over the past few days. Sometimes things ‘get’ you out of the blue and when I first saw that quote my first thought was how many of us do just that? We think oh I don’t have the money/time/inclination to make a difference so why bother.
It reminds me of the starfish quote…
Once a man was walking along a beach. The sun was shining and it was a beautiful day. Off in the distance he could see a person going back and forth between the surf’s edge and the beach. Back and forth this person went. As the man approached he could see that there were hundreds of starfish stranded on the sand as the result of the natural action of the tide.
The man was struck by the apparent futility of the task. There were far too many starfish. Many of them were sure to perish. As he approached, the person continued the task of picking up starfish one by one and throwing them into the surf.
As he came up to the young man he said, “You must be crazy. There are thousands of miles of beach covered with starfish. You can’t possibly make a difference.” The young man looked at him. He then stooped down and picked up one more starfish and threw it back into the ocean. He turned back to the man and said, “It made a difference to that one!”
A variation of the story adds this:
“The man looked at the young man inquisitively and thought about what he had done and said. Inspired, he joined the young man in throwing starfish back into the sea. Soon others joined, and all the starfish were saved.”
Every little helps. Another saying we have heard often I am sure. But does every little help? For those saved starfish it certainly did… but a little bit of money donated… does that make a difference? A once-off morning spent at your favourite charity… does that really make a difference long term?
And most important of all to me – a little bit of time spent on us. Does that make a difference?
If we don’t care that much about ourselves, don’t think it makes a difference to spend a little time on how we feel about ourselves, our self worth… then why should anybody else value us – we are obviously not valuing ourselves if we can’t find me time.
I am too busy… I have so many other commitments… I have too many people depending on me… I care for my family and I just don’t have time for me.
Why has it come to this? Why are we considered selfish if we think about ourselves? Women especially seem to fall prey to these thoughts. I ask my clients – what about you and time for you?
Oh, I have to look after my husband/ageing parents/children/pets/plants/full time job… the list goes on. I have no time for me… that would be selfish.
So to get back to does doing a little make a difference? Is it a mistake to do nothing if you only have time/money/energy to do a little?
I believe we are all equal in the eyes of whatever deity we believe in – God, the Universe… so therefore should we not be ‘allowed’ to spend a few minutes a day on ourselves? If we started thinking about putting ourselves equal first. How does that sound? No better than anyone else but not worse/inferior/not deserving less than anyone else either. Surely that isn’t selfish?
This is where it can be extremely valuable to use those few minutes for meridian tapping. Again, if you say you don’t have time for tapping, I assume that at some stage on a regular basis you have to use the toilet. Tap then while you are sitting there.
Don’t know where to start? No idea what to say when tapping?
There is a great diagram on our site that you can download as a PDF and print out and carry around with you until you become au fait with the tapping points. It explains how to do the basic tapping – the set-up and then the reminders.
Once you have your diagram in front of you you could try these scripts and see where they lead you:
Even though there is a big part of me that thinks it is selfish to put myself even equal first, I am open to doing it anyway.
Even though it sounds really strange to even think of putting myself equal first, what if I just did it anyway.
Even though I have never even thought I could put myself equal first without the sky falling in (or being struck down by lightening for being so selfish or being shouted at by my husband/mother/whomever) I am willing to begin this new process right now.
EB: I am selfish
SE: I am not selfish
UE: This is so new and difficult
UN: I guess if I keep going it will get easier
CH: I feel guilty
CB: Keep going
UA: I’ve never done this before
TOH: It is safe to try new ideas right now.
Take a deep breath and evaluate your feelings. Any calmer? Feeling less selfish? Less stressed?
Realised the sky didn’t fall on you :).
Now do the exercise again either using the same set ups and reminders or whatever words come into your head that feel right to you.
I am confident that if you do this on a regular basis, you will begin to appreciate yourself more – and thus allow yourself a little more time for such an important person. Remember, as I wrote earlier in this article, if you don’t value yourself, why should or would anyone else?
And if you need more help, we are here for you every step of the way. Just phone or e-mail me, Maureen, and I
will be very happy to help you help yourself :).