This post is dedicated to Ashley, who assists Chris Guillebeau in his work. Chris Guillebeau wrote the book ‘The Happiness of Pursuit’, a nice play on ‘In Pursuit of Happyness’. A book that talks about setting big goals for yourself and then finding the joy in chasing those. A book I recommend to anyone who wants to give some direction to their lives. Really, the book is inspirational, funny and full of wisdom that you can use. Funny enough, when I told some people about the stories in there, the response was exactly like the people in the book said: They thought they were crazy.
Well I didn’t think so. I believe that things like visiting all countries in the world, cooking a dish from every country or taking a university course in one year instead of four is amazing. It shows dedication, passion and the right amount of crazy. I decided to write a message to Chris Guillebeau. He seemed to me like an approachable person who would like to hear positive responses to his book. I wrote an e-mail, saying how I felt inspired in this phase of my life, where I am trying to get things sorted and find my own purpose in life. I also wrote that I didn’t expect a reply, so that it was ok. I just wanted to share.
Big surprise, assistant Ashley M. wrote back to me. Now, I know that this is a person who doesn’t know me or my stupid problems, but the reply was kind and warm. About me not expecting a reply, she wrote: “Your statement about not sending messages because you don’t believe you’ll hear back? I totally relate to that. I used to believe that, too. But you’d be surprised what you’ll get back if you send it anyways. What have you got to lose? ” She also suggested I could try to write something myself for their website. I did, I hope they’ll post it because I believe it was a good piece.
I wrote a thank you e-mail to Ashley. Explaining I was going down this path of self-development and growth, how it wasn’t easy but messages like this give me that glimmer of hope. I got back another friendly e-mail: “It sounds like you’re moving in the right direction and I have no doubt that good things are in your near future. Life is so full of possibilities! You never know what amazing thing is going to come your way tomorrow. Keep the faith, Guido!” All Ashley really did was doing her job, but also being friendly and encouraging. It’s such an amazingly small gesture. It can mean so much.
Now, why am I writing a blogpost about this? Well, because Ashley, who doesn’t know me, was kind enough to look at my message in a positive way. I couldn’t do that for a long time and still struggle to look at myself and others in a positive way. The fact that someone across the ocean took a moment to send this kindness my way, is well inspirational and cool. For some reason I feel a bit stronger now. Better things are coming my way, as long as I keep working and believing.
Thanks Ashley. Sometimes something so little can mean so much to someone. I’ll start trying to do this more often. Do little nice things for others, just because it should be done more.
I also learned that if you want, you can reach out and get in touch with those you admire. I got replies from Karl Spracklen (metal scientist dude) and from Frank Turner (my favorite punkrock bard) in the past. Just be determined (and follow the link)