Wondering where Saver Queen has been? I’ve been working a short-term contract that finishes at the end of the month. The job has required some crazy-long hours, which means I haven’t had time to blog, or really do anything else at all. So this post comes with an apology to my readers who have sent me emails and haven’t yet received a reply.
I’ve been working at a world-renowned scientific institution and have enjoyed the opportunity to meet some incredible people from all over the world. Many of these individuals have somewhat of a celebrity status, and I admire many of them.
Unfortunately, someone I admired (we’ll call him K) has really let me down. I had K on a pedestal and thought, despite some arrogance on his part, that he was truly brilliant and was changing the world for the better. K ended up being someone very different from who I thought he was. He behaves astonishingly unethically. It was extremely disappointing to watch, let alone bear the brunt of his unethical behaviour. Even if much of his work benefits humanity, he simultaneously counteracts at least some of this progress by behaving in ways that degrade other human beings – specifically women.
I used to think I needed to impact the world in a big, big way. It was my goal to change the world. I used to believe that small, daily transactions of kindness and good intentions were not worth as much as devoting your life to organizations that touch thousands of lives. But I’ve slowly been coming to the conclusion that small acts of kindness do make a difference. They are worth just as much, perhaps more, than grand gestures, because they are genuine, spontaneous, and can have impact far greater than we ever know. Likewise, if our careers are made up of nobel deeds, but we degenerate others every time we are “off stage” (both figuratively and literally in this case,) surely our net contribution to the world is badly depleted.
I may not ever have the money, or status, or fame that K has. I may not ever reach the same number of people. The President of the United States will probably never hear my name, let alone consult me for advice. But I will at least know that any attempts I make to change the world are from the heart. That when I meet someone new, I do my best to be kind, to honour who they are, to acknowledge them and their rights as a human being. And perhaps, even if I don’t ever accomplish anything else in my life, that is good enough.