In a world that often celebrates grand gestures and huge achievements, it's easy to overlook the impact of small actions. It's like we're conditioned to believe that success is synonymous with big. But let's take a moment to appreciate the force of 'subtle'.
Think about a pebble. How often in your life have you dropped it into water or skimmed it across the waves? Watched the ripples lap outwards? Those ripples extend way beyond the initial splash. And like this, small actions we take in our daily lives ripple outwards and shape our world in unexpected ways.
Take time to check in with a friend. Send them a message. Make a genuine connection. Help someone out. Pay extra for your coffee now and then for someone else to have one for free. Do 5 minutes of a chore you've been putting off because it feels overwhelming. Smile as you greet someone.
When was the last time someone's small act of kindness make your day a little brighter? Or something you did just a little a day add up before you realised you'd achieved a great deal? These small things each day may seem trivial at first, but they add up.
It's the same in books. Both in writing them and in the stories we write about.
A book is a massive achievement. You can't write it all in one go. Instead, it's a series of small efforts. Writing little and often until it finally becomes a full book. Don't panic about the end result. Just sit there and do a little each day.
And for your stories. We seek grand plots and glory in books. We think it all has to be big final events. But I often think about hobbits. Particularly Sam, Merry, and Pippin. Their actions are tiny. Asking an ent to travel South, for example. But the impacts it had were huge. And Sam was kind. Always. His kindness kept Frodo tethered in his darkest times. Remember to include the small daily kindnesses and efforts in your stories too. Just like in the real world.
In a society that glorifies overnight success, remember (in your life and in books), change comes from small steps.
Small actions. Consistent. Daily commitments to making a difference.
Don't underestimate the power of your small actions. It's the cumulative effect of small ripples that will shape the world around you, after all.