The Power of Making a Little Difference and Starting from where you are

Written by
Written by

Deolu Akinyemi

Once upon a time, amidst the pages of a novel, an author found himself trapped in the clutches of writer’s block. No matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t escape the confines of the current page. Frustrated and yearning for inspiration, he took a much-needed break and sought solace at a nearby beach.

In the early morning hours, before the sun had even risen, he set out for the beach. Upon arrival, he nestled himself under the comforting shade of a tree and observed the ebb and flow of the sea. It rhythmically surged forward, gaining momentum as it crashed against the shore, only to retreat again and repeat the cycle. The sea’s relentless dance was just what his mind needed to find rest.

But one day, at precisely 11 a.m., a peculiar man appeared on the beach. He began to dance, swaying away from the sea and then back towards it. His movements were fluid and captivating. He danced back and forth for an hour and then vanished. The author pondered, perhaps he was simply exercising.

The following day, the author returned to the beach, seeking his usual dose of serenity. All was calm and tranquil until 11 a.m., when the enigmatic man returned, faithfully performing his customary routine. This time, the author noticed that whenever the man bent down, he would pick up a seashell and toss it into the sea as he danced closer to the shore. Intrigued by this ritual, the author remained silent, waiting for answers.

On the third day, the author eagerly awaited the arrival of his dancing companion. As the clock struck 11 a.m., the time for confrontation had come. Gathering his courage, he approached the man and inquired about the purpose behind his peculiar dance. The man explained that he had observed how, with each rolling tide, the sea brought forth countless seashells leaving their natural habitat, destined to perish. His mission was to help these seashells find their way back home. The author chuckled, questioning how such a seemingly small effort could make a difference when faced with thousands of seashells. How could he possibly change their fate?

With a gentle smile, the dancer sprinted towards the shore, seized a single seashell, and raced back to the sea, casting it into the waves. Returning to the author’s side, he uttered, “But it made all the difference in the world to that one seashell.”

The author stood dumbfounded, captivated by the depth of the dancer’s simple act. It dawned upon him that he didn’t need to alter the destinies of all the seashells to create change; he could make a difference for just one, and that one would experience all the transformation they needed. At that moment, he joined the dancer, determined to make his own little difference. Soon, others were drawn to their cause, forming a rich community of supporters, each committed to making more than just a small impact.

The lessons embedded within this tale are self-evident, aren’t they? What difference are you striving to make? What lessons do you extract from this story?

-Adeolu Akinyemi

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