Even difficult times can provide good reminders.
Recently I learned of the passing of two people I knew,one a high school classmate and another a professional colleague.
I was saddened by the news, and felt for their family and friends. But in the sadness I was reminded that life is short and we should live fully. We never know which day will be our last.
Reminders have the power to shape us. Tragedy and crisis are harsh reminders, but they still teach useful lessons.
Sometimes, without thinking about it this way, we seek out inspiring reminders. Millions around the world watched the 2012 Olympics in London because it was a reminder of the possibilities of human achievement.
But what if we ordered our lives so that we had more positive reminders each day?
Isn’t it good to view art and nature regularly to remind us of grandeur?
Wouldn’t it be a great idea to write a thank you note each week as a reminder of gratitude?
How inspiring might it be to read about successful entrepreneurs and scientific discovery to remind us of opportunities?
Could making time to go a museum or sign up for a class remind us of the importance of curiosity?
What can we make of the bad reminders?
When someone is petty, it should remind us not to stoop to such behavior.
Hurtful words overheard can remind us to choose our language carefully.
If another is evil, it should remind us to make a stand for good.
When we encounter rude behavior, it can remind us of the critical need for civility and politeness.
Many reminders find us and even the bad can be used for good.
Here’s the key: when something significant in life happens, simply ask yourself, “What should this remind me to do?” (or “not do” as the case may be.)
We’d do well to consciously create the right reminders daily as well as to learn from those reminders thrust upon us.