We wake every day wanting and needing to be significant in this life. We need to be loved, appreciated or important to someone or some cause. No one is immune, and I am no exception. The degree to which we are not fulfilled this way causes us stress, anxiety, loneliness or worse. This drive governs many of our moods, actions and motivations in each of our social circles – including work as a society. The need is different for each of us, and we have to remember that inside every person we know is a person we don’t know.
One day, I was playing music and singing at an art fair in midtown Houston. A man, appearing to be in his 70s, stood motionless ten feet away with a small thin-line smile. My typical groupie is 35 – 50 years old and a bit more animated. When I finished the song, he walked over closer, dropped a large bill in my tip jar and said, “’Tupelo Honey’ and the one before it, ‘Tennessee Whiskey’ were my wife’s favorite songs.” While I get release, escape and solace from playing music – it’s therapeutic -- my significance comes from the kind of joy that man got from being reminded of his best love. It wasn’t how well I played or sang the songs; it was the timestamp on his heart that did it for him.
We need to have multiple sources for mining our significance. It can be our significant other, our religious recharge, pets, friends, books that remind us, or some work accolade for a job well done. We need to watch for them, validate them and wallow in them for a moment. Then once we are satisfied in the moment, we need to be that significance for someone else. We are all searching.
If you are near the Towne Lake Boardwalk in Cypress, Texas area on Friday, October 11 from 6:30-9:30, come by for my first show in 10 months. Get in touch with that timestamp on your heart and see me connect with mine.