The Joy of Insignificance

Written by Kourtney Lesperance, WLLC 2015-2016

The idea of keeping a jar of little notes to myself seemed silly to me at first. Reading about the practice that week, I kind of went into it thinking that it was going to be kind of childish or just something that I wouldn’t take seriously. I left the same night after wellness back home to visit and sort of forgot about the jar until I came back on Sunday. When I got back I was in a really melancholy state as I just had this whole rush of homesickness yet again while returning back to DU. That same day, I remembered that I had this practice to do, and I thought of little moments from my trip that I could put into my jar. It instantly lit up my spirits as I got a chance to remember these little joyful moments and know that they’d be there for me to read later.

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The practice really is a mood brightener. It was a way for me to give meaning or significance to a seemingly miniscule things that may make me happy but that are too small to even mention to a friend or family member. That is one of the main things I noticed about the practice: that it allowed me to take pride or rejoice in something that I usually wouldn’t and it let me appreciate how each of these tiny instances really build my holistic happiness. Accumulating these meager events over periods of a day or a week or even a year are the things that give me joy in my life; it doesn’t always have to be about huge or memorable events. My day could be tremendously cheerful even if by the end of the day there is nothing really noteworthy or unforgettable that happened. My ecstasy could simply be a combination of all the minor forgettable moments that occurred that day. It was just eye-opening to realize this and to realize that our mood can be such an accumulation of these little pure moments of happiness. I really loved reading the notes to myself and seeing how some of these moments were things that I had to make an effort to remember. Both writing them in the first place and then reading them after a few days made me intensely appreciate how their insignificance is actually what creates their significance in my life.

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In this happiness and this realization, I feel like I found a sort of grace. Grace in the way life builds upon itself and just ease in how each and every moment really holds a sense of importance. Just like how grace is described as being “not something you can hold, but rather something you flow with,” I feel like every moment in my life is like this as well: a smile from a stranger, an accomplishment, large or small, of my own, a sunny day, any fleeting moment of happiness that maybe brings a smirk to my face or a light feeling to my heart. All of this and really just all of life also just encompass the feeling of Grace. It is “a state of being that feels like serene happiness.” I really feel like I’ve gained a better sense of grace within these small moments of happiness through my life and I wish now that more people were clearer and more self-aware to understand how all their unimportant, meaningless, passing moments of slight happiness really have an impact in their lives.

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