“A tiny spark can start a great fire.” This proverb has a lot of truth in it and has, again and again, accompanied me over the past year.
For the fifth year in a row, on the weekend before Christmas, I am now writing my annual Holidays letter to all of you. I can still remember when I wrote my first text in 2018. I was sitting on the sofa in my flat at the time, drinking a glass of wine and listening to Christmas music. The text came about unplanned, simply out of the moment. It then developed into this series. A tiny spark in the moment started a fire.
I find it difficult to write this year’s letter, as I did in 2020 and 2021. The world is dominated by negative events, many people are suffering from war, hunger, poverty, and so on. Nevertheless, I would like to look more at the positive things in this year’s letter. Despite all the negativity that surrounds us every day, it is important not to disregard the positive things. Just this month, for example, we received reports from a hospital in England where a revolutionary new form of therapy using modified cells has made a potentially major step forward in cancer treatment. We successfully launched a revolutionary space telescope and completed the first successful planetary defense test. We’re a big step closer to the mission to put humans on the moon again. “The Ocean Cleanup” project has unveiled and successfully tested their new System 3, which could allow humanity to finally clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. And also, just a week ago, researchers in California achieved a breakthrough in the field of fusion energy, something that could one day provide humanity with limitless, carbon-free energy.
Mother Theresa once said, “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love”. In my view, this quote goes hand in hand with the proverb from the first sentence. All of us, every one of us, can help make the world a better place. These do not even have to be great acts, as long as they are done with much love. Every little action can make a big difference, every little spark can start a big fire. Retired United States Navy Admiral William H. McRaven once gave a speech at the University of Texas. He said: “If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.” Why? Because if you come home after a miserable day, you will find a bed that you made, which gives you encouragement that tomorrow will be better. Good deeds do not necessarily mean doing something good for others. You can also do something good for yourself, look after yourself, and appreciate yourself. Some of you will find this easy, others may find it more difficult. And that’s perfectly okay: We are all different. Just because we’re different, and maybe even feel lonely and alone because we think of ourselves as different, doesn’t mean we don’t have the right to be okay.
Personal appreciation is something that has gained great importance for me in the last year. I am a very introverted person, it is not easy for me to meet new people and I need a lot of time for myself. For a long time, I struggled with this, and I still do today. But I have learned to better accept myself, not to let every reproach or attempt to make me feel bad about it get to me. And I started by keeping my personal New Year’s resolutions: I wanted to travel more, and I managed to do that. I visited 16 European countries this year, most of them alone. I wanted to learn new things, and I have achieved that. I spent a lot of time teaching myself the basics of web development. And this is exactly the advice I would like to give you for the next year: Each of you exists only once in this world. You are all unique. That makes each of you special. Allow yourselves this appreciation, because you are worth it. And to get back to the quote from the beginning: A tiny spark can start a great fire.
A little over three years ago I became a moderator in this community. I have been part of this community for almost 8 years. I have learned a lot thanks to Infinite Flight, met many people, and also experienced a lot. The community has evolved, just as Infinite Flight has evolved. And that is good. We got a lot of exciting new things in the simulator in 2022 and I’m sure 2023 will have a lot of new things in store for us as well. I’m definitely looking forward to it and hope to write you my annual holiday letter again next year.
For now: Take care of yourself, take care of each other. And stay safe! Happy holidays!
Dear Community - 2018
Dear Community - 2019
Dear Community - 2020
Dear Community - 2021