The Effect of Small Choices (and Celebrating 200 Days of Living with Flair)

On the 200th day of living with flair, I notice my one little finger joint has been hurting me for over a week.  In fact, the arthritic finger joint has changed the way I hold my hand when I type, grade papers, and perform everyday tasks.

This morning, not just the finger hurts.  The elbow too.  And now the neck.   Now the back.  Now I think I’m walking differently. 

I call the doctor. 

It amazes me that a small pain in one finger joint could upset the balance of the whole body. It changed how I moved.  The interconnectedness of my body challenges me to not ignore the cascading effect of one negative thing.  I ignored the one ailment, and look at the reverberation through my whole body!

Not a fun way to celebrate living with flair.  But then, I spin the story.  I’m looking in the bathroom mirror this morning and deeply considering the verb, “reverberate.”  A small thing–a stone thrown in a lake–circles out until the whole lake feels it and knows it.  I visualize a cascading waterfall.  If an ailment can upset the balance, then maybe a positive thing, full of flair, can reverberate as powerfully.

What small thing might I do that could reverberate with a positive effect throughout this whole day? 

Drinking a glass of water?  Taking a deep breath?  Giving a hug to a family member?  Maybe my days fall off kilter, not because of a monumental problem, but because of a small thing (as small as a finger joint) that sets the day in motion.  As I think about regulating mood, connecting with God, and living with flair, I can’t ignore the power of one simple act that reverberates and cascades down through the day.  

I start small.  I drink a glass of water.  I hydrate.  Who knows what I set in motion by that one choice? I can’t know for sure, but for some reason, my joints start to feel better. 

Living with flair means I see the cascading effect of small choices. 

(Photo “A Cascading Waterfall, Flanked by Flowers,” courtesy of Edo / Picassa Web / Creative Commons)

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  1. Like that idea – one small thing cascading, reverberating. Helps to not need to do something monumental but simply, graciously, small, lovely, helpful, positive…have a wonderful weekend!

  2. I know for sure that other people have, by one small act or word or smile, changed my day for the better. I need to remind myself that I can do that for other people, and even for myself. That is a powerful ability. Wonderful insight from you, as usual.