A SchoolHouse for Everyone

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Be Generous with Yourself

Laura Grill
December 9, 2020

I recently spoke to a friend who said, “if we don’t come out of this having learned something new, then we didn’t make the most of this situation.” As is often the case, I took these words to heart. No, I didn’t magically learn a new language- although that would have been useful. I thought about what I wanted to accomplish.

I want to find ways to improve our society through education. I hope that real systematic change occurs as the world reflects on this experience. And finally, I wish that we could be a-kinder society. But that wasn’t what my friend meant. I had to think about what did I want personally from this experience.

Selfishly, I can’t wait to “revenge travel” once it is safe.

But again- that was thinking to the future. I needed to stay in the present.

I thought about what I might miss when this is over, or what I might regret. What lessons did I learn?

How is a slower pace sometimes better than racing around as I did before. How has more meals at home been a blessing (and an annoyance)? And I returned to this idea of what I might have “left on the table”? What opportunities did I need to seize before it is too late?  

I thought about times when I have felt pure joy. I realized that in the past 7 months, and really the past 11years, my focus has been on others. So I thought about hobbies that I used to have.

I decided to paint.

While my children were occupied with Religious School I painted. I gave myself a gift of time (FYI this was less than 2 hours). I’m no Picasso, not that it matters, this was just for me. Most importantly, I realized that I needed to be generous to myself more often.   

So this holiday season be generous with generosity. I don’t mean in the sense of material goods. Show generosity to those around you, and in the world through kindness, empathy, and time.  

Be kind to yourself. Be kind to others.  

Determine your unicorn space. Eve Rodsky, author of “Fair Play” describes your unicorn space as “one magical thing that gives you mental relief and a natural lift”. Your unicorn space is not exercise, television watching, reading, seeing a friend, or getting a manicure. Think about that personal “lift” and feel free to share it with the SchoolHouse community!