That little act of kindness in the midst of chaos

They are simple words, however they can really mean a huge amount to someone!

I have had what many around me have described as “a very tough week”. I know that the week has had an effect on me… a couple of sleepless nights, a couple of headaches. There has been some fairly extensive active reflection going on in the middle of these circumstances, ensuring that I’m being consistent with my framework for how I wish to live my life, and that the actions that I am taking around the circumstances are in the best interests of everyone involved in them.

One key observation I can make is that while intellectually I’m pretty sure I’m in an OK place around the circumstances of this week, the physical symptoms are telling me that there is definitely a gap between where my head is at, and the realities of the stress that the situation is creating. Being aware of this is invaluable, because it is a reminder that I have to look after myself in the middle of all this, and that I’ll know when I’m back in balance.

You are probably wondering why though this post is titled “that little act of kindness in the midst of chaos?”

The week has been filled with contact points with others who know what is going on and have looked out for me, and enquired about how I am going in the circumstances. That type of support is always appreciated. However it was another little act of kindness that really hit me in the midst of this weeks chaos.

A  firefighting colleague, who is no longer in the firefighting industry,  who I have not seen or had any real contact with for a LOT of years,  reached out on Linkedin by endorsing me for some skills. A little random act of professional kindness, which I immediately sent a thank you message for…. but that was not the powerful act…. it was what followed.

Several minutes later my phone rang, and it was that  colleague who reached out to say thank you. Initially it was a thank you around the story of how I got here on this blog and the work of the Samuel Morris Foundation. He let me know that via a completely unknown connection he had been informed of the impact that our work in the drowning prevention space had on this unknown contact, and he wanted to say thank you for those efforts and the difference they make, to that person and to the broader community. Then he went further, and he referred back to some ancient history of us as fellow firefighters and a particularly traumatic set of circumstances that he had found himself in professionally all those years ago. He acknowledged that one night in the midst of his own little piece of chaos I had picked up the phone and rang to check on his welfare and he wanted to say THANK YOU for all the difference that made to him in that moment.

There is no way that this colleague could have known about the circumstances of this week, or the impact that his little act of kindness via an endorsement and a phone call would have on me today in the midst of my own little piece of chaos. However, those little words that he started and ended our conversation with THANK YOU have had a big positive impact on my day.

My question to you  is…… how often do you say THANK YOU with some real meaning? Is there someone you can think of today, that reaching out and saying THANK YOU for something they have done for you (even if it was 20ish years ago!) would be valuable (because you never know what might be happening for that person right now!).

THANK YOU, for taking the time to read this post…. now go say THANK YOU to someone who made a difference for you!

Maintaining the rage

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There are some things that have been consistent parts of our lives… and it’s only when an anniversary and article like the one linked to below pops up that you consider how long and how much they have been influencing parts of your life.

Rage’s influence on the Australian music scene is undeniable. The ritual of watching, listening, learning and exploring our culture through the program is one that fans across the country have done for decades at weird hours of the day and night. Rage is also often the first place that Australian artists are able to reach a national audience by submitting their videos.

RAGE! is one of those things for me from late night pimply, gangly teenage watching while hanging out with your mates,  all the way through to being a night shift companion providing background to those small quiet hours of the morning.

Congratulations to RAGE and ABC for such an iconic part of our lives.

 

Rage made its debut on ABC TV 30 years ago this week, on Friday April 17 1987.

Source: 30 years of Rage, and no signs of quietening

Northern NSW  floods, this one was different.. what does it mean.

The impact of Tropical Cylone Debbie was felf far and wide across the Northern Australian landscape, and eventually as far away as New Zealand. I’ve spent a number of days operating in support of Fire and Rescue NSW’s operational activity assisting the communities in far north New South Wales.

Understanding the nature of these events in a changing climate will be increasingly important not only for emergency services organisations responding to the impacts, but for communities who must be prepared.

The link below provides an excellent overview of this event.

 

The devastating flood damage wreaked by Tropical Cyclone Debbie has left many residents in northern New South Wales facing an enormous cleanup that could take months .

Source: Northern NSW is no stranger to floods, but this one was different