Image: Seven candles and assorted greenery on a table, with a person lighting the candle in the middle.

Today is Enough and You are Enough. Use Your Special Things!

Do you have a bottle of fancy wine or liquor in the back of the cabinet that you’re saving for the perfect moment? A special dress that you’re refusing to wear until the perfect event? A candle that’s so beautiful and smells so good that you just won’t burn it? A TV show that you don’t want to end so you just won’t finish it?

Why do we keep ourselves from the best things in life and the simple joys, waiting for the perfect moment? Why can’t any moment be the perfect moment? The TEDx speaker we’re introducing you to today helps us rethink what a perfect moment really is, and along the way learn to really live!

Image: Seven candles and assorted greenery on a table, with a person lighting the special candle in the middle.
Source: Unsplash

Gillian Dunn is a Registered Nurse from Canada whose work in the Emergency Room provides her a perspective that is reinforced daily: on a dime, your world can change instantly. And when it does, what’s actually important becomes crystal clear. 

Those excuses for why you didn’t light the candle, didn’t wear the dress, or didn’t drink the scotch? They seem completely silly. But you don’t have to live through a life-altering tragedy to take this principle to heart, you can start by simply taking advantage of the wonderful opportunities in life – no perfect moment needed. 

“We have no problem with gathering stuff. But we have a problem with using it.”

Gillian Dunn

So what does “stuff” have to do with living life? Certainly that’s a shallow mindset… or is it? The stuff that we accumulate says a lot about who we are, what we hold dear, and how we see ourselves. Every time we don’t choose the finer things in our lives, we are, in some ways, saying we’re not enough, or this moment isn’t enough to be treated as special. 

As Gillian points out,“These items dictate the milestones in our lives. We think to ourselves: I’ll wear it when… I’ll light the candle when… I’ll use it when… You fill in the blank. When you make partner? When you lose the weight? When your life finally matches your life on Pinterest? The mindset of ‘I am not enough’ keeps our clothes in our closets and our champagne going flat in the bottle.”

Why is it that in a world of so much abundance we cling to things and treat them as precious? We keep the good china on the shelf and wait for company instead of treating ourselves to a nice night in. We put off drinking the wine even on the milestone because “there might be something bigger” to keep it for. Perhaps it’s time for us to clean out those closets and drawers full of precious things!

Consider these questions:

  1. Do you have clothes in your closet with the tags still on?
  2. Do you have clothes in your closet that you haven’t worn in a year?
  3. Do you have a candle in your house that has never been lit?
  4. Do you have alcohol that you’re saving for a special occasion?
  5. Do you have dinnerware or china that you’re saving for a special occasion?

Gillian would bet (and we’d bet, too) that your answer is yes, to at least one of those questions. 

And perhaps, deciding that any given Tuesday is the perfect time to use that china, scotch, suit, candle, or whatever it may be for you, it can change your life.

Here’s Gillian at TEDx White Rock with more powerful reasons that we should stop waiting for the perfect time, and instead just live

Via: TEDx Talks 1

For more incredible TEDx Talks, visit their YouTube channel here

Life is what you make it. So make it one you enjoy.

“When you put excuses on hold, the other side of that is joy. Confidence. Freedom. All of these characteristics that we had kept hidden in our closet came out when you [say]: No more excuses. Today’s the day.”

Gillian Dunn

So, what do you have in mind right now in your house that fits the bill? What have you decided is too nice, too expensive, or too good to use? And what made you think the best time to treat yourself isn’t right now?

This applies to our words too. What have you been waiting for the right moment to tell someone? Could life be better instantly if you relinquished the desire for the “perfect” moment or setting and told them right now?

These questions are fun to ponder, but are even better when you use them to take action and start really living. So, whatever item it is that you have in mind while reading this article, go get it! Right now, decide, do you want to give it a chance or give it away? Whatever your decision you’re either making today special, or making more room to enjoy the abundance you already have!

If you’re looking for inspiration on how others have trimmed the excess to make every day special, here are a few places to start:

Meet a Man and His Dog Taking a Walk Around the World!

Join a man and his pooch on an epic walk around the globe! When we travel we are reminded of the things that make life worth living: natural wonders, the joy of discovery, and warm conversations with kind strangers. Here’s what can happen when you bring your best pal along for the journey. 

Read More
Can Kindness Get You Further than Money?

How far can kindness really get us in life? In 2017, Two brothers set out to travel the world with nothing—no money, no plans, not even clothes—and traded homemade t-shirts for everything they needed! They made their way into some unique and wonderful situations, all the way relying on their blind faith in the kindness of strangers. Here’s what they can show us about the value of a good story and a kind smile!

Read More
No More Steeping in Solitude, Make Friends in This Free Tea Van!

Would you open up the doors of your home to share a cup of tea with a stranger? What if you made this your daily routine? For this traveler, sharing a cup of tea became more than a way to connect with others—it built an entire community.

Read More

So remember, don’t let your candle melt in the closet. Any moment or day can feel special… all you have to do is decide that it is.

  • Ellen

Don’t miss out on a single article!

Enjoy unlimited access to over 500 articles & podcast that give you a positive perspective on the state of the world and show you practical ways you can help.

Sign up now!

Notes:

  1. “Change Your Closet, Change Your Life | Gillian Dunn | TedxWhiteRock.” YouTube, TEDx Talks, 18 July 2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WiVHSRY2I5Y.
Published: June 6, 2022

Image: Ellen Allerton

Ellen Allerton

Chief Operating Officer

After graduating from St. Lawrence University in 2020 and returning home to Vermont, Ellen found that helping make the world a better place with the Goodness Exchange team was just where she wanted to be. You can usually find her watching television while getting crafty, on the ice as a figure skating coach for 10-14 year old's, or in her inflatable kayak named Heidi. She's quite the film nerd and quite the cook, and likes it best when those two things - movies and food - coincide.

Join for as little as $2 per month

Connect with and learn from others on a member-exclusive platform. Ask questions and find help with projects, share trusted resources, request and attend workshops, and learn from others’ experiences to catalyze your work.

Become a Member

Follow Us

You’re not alone in caring.
There is a wave of goodness and progress well underway, all around the world.

Want more articles like this one?
You're in luck! 

Discover real-life stories of innovators, change-makers, and problem-solvers.

Enjoy 30-days of unlimited access to hundreds of articles and podcasts when you subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

Name
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Want more articles like this one? You're in luck! 

Discover real-life stories of innovators, change-makers, and problem-solvers.

Enjoy 30-days of unlimited access to hundreds of articles and podcasts when you subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

Name
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.