The Small, Happy Life

Here’s a long article in the New York Times.

What struck me is the truth in it. So many times, we agonised about making the big decisions in life (“the BIG one”), when really, at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter. It is the small, little ones that we make unconsciously, organically, every day that matter in the end.

Many women caught in the career-or-motherhood decision trap. BIG decision. But really, it is the small ones in your everyday life that lead you to the right decision for you. When I consciously tried to get pregnant with my third child, people around me told me to think carefully, because it would be difficult enough to manage a career with two young children. I am glad I did not listen to those well-meaning friends, because nobody should give advice on your life until they have walked in your shoes for at least a year. Fortunately, I was strong enough to realise that, and I made my decision on the day-to-day basis: what feels good and right today, and what works for our family? I never thought about it in terms of Motherhood Vs Career, but the daily happiness of our family life. Because the future is not known. And big decisions are based on theories and projections, whereas the small ones are real life.

Terence J. Tollaksen wrote that his purpose became clearer once he began to recognize the “decision trap”: “This trap is an amazingly consistent phenomena whereby ‘big’ decisions turn out to have much less impact on a life as a whole than the myriad of small seemingly insignificant ones.”

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