Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Pearls of Wisdom, Part 2

Here is the second installment of things I have learned on this journey.  I have never lived in a huge city, but have never lived in a very small town either.  All of my homes have fallen somewhere in between.  Boy, have I learned a lot about surviving in a small town!

Living on a Tiny Base or in a Tiny Town
  • There is always a need or a volunteer opportunity.  There will never be enough people to fill every slot.  Choose one or two areas to really plug into, and don't feel guilty about saying "no" to the rest of it.  Burn-out is very real and very common in places like this.
  • Don't be a gossip.  I guess this is applicable to everyone no matter where you live, but it is especially detrimental in a small town.  You will get caught.  It will come back to you.  And you will lose friends.  End of story.
  • If there isn't a program or club or organization that fulfills your needs, start one.  This is the beauty of small town living....the sky is the limit.  Don't sit back and complain about the lack of activity.  Get out there and do something about it!  My friend Angelica noticed that there wasn't a good activity to plug new moms into base life here, so she started a playgroup that continues to this day, even though she is gone.
  • Walk the Walk.  Especially in tiny towns, people notice you.  They know who you are and what you stand for.  It is even more important here to remember who you are and what you represent.  Someone is always watching.
  • Enjoy the simple things.  In small places, options are scarce.  That isn't always a bad thing.  Not many restaurants?  Potlucks with friends are so much better.  Not much to do on a Saturday afternoon?  Round up some folks and a ball for a kickball game.  There is a beauty in simplicity.  Learn to see it and appreciate it.

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