— Life —

Small Can Be Big Too

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Last month I attended a poetry workshop. Over the course of two hours I learnt about assonance and alliterations and couplets, and I wrote three very different poems.

I loved it not only for what I learnt and produced, but because despite being the only person who turned up, the instructor held the workshop with so much enthusiasm.  There were no apologies for the absence of others, no excuses for not having more people in attendance, and I really admire that.

We live in a world that glorifies big achievements: Best-selling authors, famous artists, singers and speakers who pack stadiums with their adoring fans, the record-breakers and anyone who has shed blood, sweat and tears to achieve something significant.

Do I feel I inspired by these people?  Of course I do. I love these stories of success and Big Life Moments as much as the next person. However, I also believe we’ve lost sight of the fact that small acts of creativity, love and support hold incredible meaning and value too.

A best-selling book may make someone feel differently about who they are, but so can a thoughtful note received out of the blue. A famous painting can move someone to tears, but so can a messy finger painting done by a child. An incredible speaker can help someone overcome a personal challenge, but so can making time for a friend when he or she needs you the most.

It’s not the number of books you sell, or the art you create, or the size of the contribution you make that will deem your life as being “successful.”

It’s whether or not you’re willing to put your whole heart into the things you feel called to do. Even during those moments and chapters in life when it feels like what you’re doing is making such a small difference…that it’s barely being noticed at all.


  • Renee August 9, 2016 at 9:29 am

    This is so true and very relevant at this time…I have been feeling that I don’t get enough views to my blog or that I am not as good as so many of the blogs I read…then I remember I do this because I can and because I love doing it. And that is truly all that matters.

    • 1010ParkPlace August 9, 2016 at 6:52 pm

      Renee, Please don’t judge yourself and your blog as compared to another. I know, firsthand, how natural and tempting that is. One is not better than another. Just different. You also don’t know how well-connected another blogger is. They might have a great entry to a bucketload of readers or money to buy advertising. You’re right. Whether you love what you do matters, as do you. You matter. Brenda

    • Esther Zimmer August 10, 2016 at 8:36 am

      Renee, thank you for commenting and I can only echo what Brenda has already said. I’m so happy that my words provided some comfort, but please don’t judge yourself based on what others are doing! As long as YOU love what you’re doing, then that’s what’s important. The Internet is a funny place, it can feel like you’re sending words out into a black hole – yet you could be changing the way someone feels or thinks and you may never know. Esther xx

  • Kathy @ SMART Living 365 August 9, 2016 at 11:47 am

    Hi Esther! So true. I try to remind myself every single day that if my words touch and inspire just one person then I am content. Thank you for this very important reminder today. ~Kathy

    • Esther Zimmer August 10, 2016 at 8:38 am

      Hi Kathy! Thanks for your lovely comment, and I couldn’t agree more with what you wrote! Esther xx

  • Jen Lawrence August 9, 2016 at 12:43 pm

    It’s often the small things that make the biggest difference isn’t it? When I look over my life, it’s not the launch dates or big celebrations that I remember but little spontaneous moments here and there. Thank you for reminding us to savour the small victories.

    • Esther Zimmer August 10, 2016 at 8:41 am

      Jen, it really is the small things! I too value those little spontaneous moments or small, unexpected gestures. Thanks for your kind words! Esther xx

  • b+ (Retire in Style Blog) August 9, 2016 at 4:48 pm

    First of all let me tell you that this blog post had the perfect number of words! It is so uncommon for people to just say what they want to say and then stop…a small number of words can have such a big impact.

    I have never had a big launch date or even a very big celebration…the biggest dates were the birth of my family and the biggest celebration was those that marked anniversaries. But, in my world, even the littlest thing can become the biggest moments.

    Thank you for saying this. Bloggers need to hear that even though their blogs are small, they are still very important. There are people that need to hear their voice.


    • Esther Zimmer August 10, 2016 at 8:49 am

      Thank you so much for your kind words, Barbara! I’m so pleased that this post resonated with you. I believe there’s so much joy to be found in seeing how valuable those ‘little things’ can be. I often feel that some of the smallest and most simple moments of my life have been the most valuable or memorable. And yes, even the smallest blog can hold enormous value – plus there’s room for all of us – big and small. Esther xx

  • Bonnie K. Aldinger August 9, 2016 at 6:00 pm

    Things really do seem to be set up these days to make it easy to think that if you aren’t a star then you’re the audience. NYC’s great for those who want another option! I play Irish music at a very long-running session at a pub in NYC (The Dempsey’s In Residence at Slainte Traditional Music Session) and one thing that I absolutely love about it is that those dividing lines just aren’t there – it’s specifically set-up to be beginner friendly, for the first couple of hours we do a round robin so if somebody walks in having learned their very first tune, they’re going to get to play it if they want to. Draws people from all walks of life, some good, some of us (oh hi) would be better if we (I) practiced more, and it’s so much fun getting to actually be part of making public music, not just listening to someone else (but when the really good players get going it’s fun to listen).

    • Esther Zimmer August 10, 2016 at 8:57 am

      Oh Bonnie, what an insightful comment! That’s so true, it’s so easy to fall into the trap of feeling that unless you’re a star then you’re the audience. I LOVE the sound of those music nights, what an amazing thing to do and how fun! Thank you for commenting and sharing your story, it made me smile and I just followed Dempsey’s Facebook page, maybe next time I’m in NYC I can come along and hear you play! Esther xx

  • 1010ParkPlace August 9, 2016 at 6:56 pm

    Essie, Last week I spoke for 45 minutes with a friend, I don’t see often, who’s been diagnosed with cancer. At the end of our phone call, he thanked me and said I’d lifted his spirits and made him feel better than he had in some time. I was humbled to know I’d made a difference. That one phone call was worth more to me than pages of comments about the things I write. That is a valuable feeling! xoxox, Brenda

    • Esther Zimmer August 10, 2016 at 9:00 am

      Brenda, I’m so sorry to read that your friend is ill with cancer, I can’t imagine how that must feel – for either of you. I’m sure he appreciated you taking the time to call and like you say, it’s not just other people we impact when we do seemingly small things like picking up the phone, those actions make us feel valuable too. Much love, Essie xxxx

  • Donna December 6, 2017 at 10:55 am

    Esther, you brought tears to my eyes! Beautiful reminder, and acknowledgement, in this age of blockbuster… everything!
    Thank you for your sensitivity. XO

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