Looking at the little details of life at first sounds quite easy but hard at the same time. Easy in the sense of finding subjects to discuss because they are the things we see, use and observe every single day. Tough in a sense that you need to look at them in a newer and different way. A very detailed perspective. Also tough as to what to (or not) include in the discussion. Still, life is a series of events that would be fun when discussed in an interesting manner.
Could you believe that every day we do a lot of things over and over again? Yet, we cannot tell how some of these things influence our lives – it is now a normal routine. And because we have taken them as normal routine, we fail to recognise the important things right in front of our faces.
We record how big things (our cars, houses…) count but forget how small things count much more. The smile we throw at our neighbour. A 10-minute afternoon nap. A good night rest. Early morning jog on Saturdays. A coin we throw into a safe box everyday for one year. The pat you gave that little boy at the park. I never really understood this until NYSC, when I did came across people who do not know what it is like to come from my own part of the country.
Everything matters, my dear. Everything counts.
In all these little events and experiences does our wisdom pile up. To them do we owe our personal growth and development. It is not about being the sharpest person on the street, the most intelligent in class or the wealthiest but the one who sees much more in others and the events around him – especially the minute(est) of detail in our everyday lives.
Details of such daily activities like:
- Waking up from bed.
- Grooming and preparing for the outside world.
- Facing the world (with a positive outlook).
- Navigating our way, safely and successfully, through our day.
- Getting back to where it all started. That place called home.
- Doing the nightly things.
And finally, laying oneself to rest.
William Morris (1834 – 1896) always began from the assumption that, as Guy Debord would later express it, the everyday “is the measure of everything”. That is, the exercise of the ordinary functions of life: eating, sleeping, loving, walking, running, swimming, riding, sailing are exercises of the body which we must be free to enjoy without any sense of shame; without any suspicion that we are rather above such common things.
Everyday life should be placed at the centre of everything. Every project starts out from it and every realisation returns here for its true meaning. Everyday life is the measure of everything; of the fulfilment, or rather non-fulfilment of human relationships; of the way time is lived; of artistic researches; of revolutionary politics. And of the lessons we put to rest as we go to bed at night.