The simplicity of a single jigsaw puzzle piece can carry tremendous significance and meaning. Recently, I started giving pieces to people in the hundreds and will continue to do so. Many times they are people that I have forged a relationship with over time and other instances, they are total strangers. If you think about it, materially, it really is not much as you hold the single piece in your hands and look at it and wonder why I gave it to you. There is little you can do with single piece; however, symbolically it is very important. By me giving you this piece, I am saying that you are important in my life and I can’t complete my life puzzle because you symbolically hold a piece and we are connected. Added to that, you are also connected not only to me but also to a whole group of people who have received a piece. You may not know who they are but it is a reminder that we are all connected and people are there to support you. I now hold my piece in my wallet. Others have it stored in their purse, wall or a keepsake box.
Another analogy that emerged for me when I looked at the puzzle piece was that all the pieces are about the same size. They have different images or shades and are unique but they are all about the same size. We may be unique in our backgrounds, looks and experiences like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. It is a reminder that we are all a piece of a puzzle and no one person is larger than the other in status. At times we might feel inferior or superior but it is a realization that all people are equal. I may have accomplished much in life but I tell people that I am still an average person but with extraordinary experiences…I am no better or worse than anyone else…I really am average.
A lesson to be learned here is that if I can pull a couple of analogies from a simple piece of a jigsaw puzzle, what are the things you can find and pull from other objects? Using the principle of CARPE – Curiosity, Appreciation, Reflections, Perspectives and Experience, you too can find purpose and meaning as well as the extraordinary in the ordinary from simple items. Check out my TEDxSFU talk about CARPE and your own discoveries – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZVNM58H_arI
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