When I was a kid our family used to vacation in Yellowstone National Park quite frequently. It is a beautiful and wondrous place. And one day, on a remote backwoods camping adventure I came to a very important conclusion.
I was small and insignificant.
I mean that in the most positive way you can imagine. There I was in a small row boat, catching some trout and enjoying the day…..when I took a moment to look around and take a little inventory. I’m surrounded by (easy to catch) trout, various types of fowl flying around and floating in the lake, and a handsome elk family on the bank across the way. This is grizzly country so you always figure that there is more out there than meets the eye. And then it hits me….
…of all the beasts here in the wild I am the least suited to survive in this environment.
AND…should me and my tiny row boat sink to the bottom of the cold mountain lake and perish the world would not even blink.
Sure, my family would miss me and so forth but every other part of the world and its population would not even know I was gone. And that revelation….
…brought me great comfort.
What I mean by that is that we all dream of doing great things and being consequential. And, of course, in many ways we are consequential to our family and friends. Very much so. But, in the broader scope of things…..not so much.
And how great is that?
There is a certain peace that comes with anonymity and smallness. People who seek fame discover the value of anonymity once they have lost it. And perhaps they fool themselves into thinking they are something other than still small.
And the sooner they figure it out the happier they will be. But, of course, what do I know?