If I had a super power I would want it to be the ability to freeze time around me. Once time was frozen I would be able to continue moving around and I wouldn’t age at all because technically time wouldn’t be moving forward. How awesome would that be? Also, if I wanted, I could choose certain people whilst I’m using my power and enable them to be unaffected with me; I wouldn’t always have to do things on my own then.
I daydream about having this power all the time: sometimes to the point that it doesn’t even feel impossible anymore.
However, if I’m quite honest, when I daydream about having a super power I’m not exactly thinking about using it to save the world. More often than not I’m thinking about how amazing it would be to never have to be sleep deprived. I’m also thinking about how successful I could be if I had all the time in the world at my disposal. Or how cool I would be if I could stop myself before I did something embarrassing.
I guess it’s okay to be entirely selfish in your thoughts, as long as it’s confined in your head and your actions suggest otherwise, right?
But this piece is less about being selfish and more about my attempts at being selfless. I know I’m not the only one, but being the person I am, I feel a sense of responsibility when it comes to doing good on this Earth. Being a combination of intelligent, unprejudiced, and kind creates a mind that wants to help all the time. Once I educate myself on an issue that I empathise with, I cannot stop myself wanting to spread the message, or do my part to help. But in reality, how much help am I supplying? I’m not wealthy, or a public figure, or in access of useful supplies/recourses. I quite literally am just a young girl, busy with her own life, who relates thinking about how much I wish I could help with actually helping. I mean, how helpful can my tweet to a couple of hundred followers really be? How about sharing that article on Facebook? Or signing that petition? Is that really selflessness, or is it in fact the very opposite? I’m so wrapped up in my own life that I don’t make the effort to actively (actively being the key word) go out and help. Instead, I’m literally sitting back and pressing buttons. Would I really use my superpower selflessly if it existed?
But then again, social media has become a hugely influential platform for change. I know of ‘youtubers’ or ‘instagrammers’ who are younger than me, but have created a name for themselves simply by being active on social media and focusing on a good cause. And we are always told that every little helps.
So I’m not going to stop sharing articles and signing petitions because they ‘can’t possibly be making a difference’. In fact, I’ll keep doing that, and in abundance, because that attitude is what will prevent me making a difference. But personally, I aspire to live a life of such selflessness that as a result, I am being equally selfish. Doing good for other people is possibly one of the best ways to feel good about yourself in my opinion. I plan on volunteering abroad in two years time and hopefully will have more opportunities for big projects like that in the future. But for now, I’m going to focus on small acts of kindness and opening little pathways to change by making channelling selflessness into my everyday actions, my diet, and where I put my money, as well as my social media appearances.
So do your part, but don’t expect to be able to change the world on your own; you don’t have super powers, after all.