A few days ago, I came across this blog post, where Jon sums of life as a PhD student 6-months into it. Well, as one who appreciates people sharing great perspective I tweeted him back to A. thank him and B. express that I am about to enter a PhD program and was stressed about my current task of changing my proposal to meet the needs of the scholarship. Well, Jon, a complete stranger who studies fossils who lives in the UK, offered to extend a helping hand. YES! Offered to take a look at my proposal and offer some feedback. Of course, I would send my information off to a complete stranger to look at. I mean, another set of eyes, outside perspective, and someone who is currently doing a doctorate? SURE!! So I did. Well, this morning I woke up to some amazing feedback and edits from Jon. I couldn't be more grateful for the time that was spent helping me, a stranger, living very far away in a completely different field of study. Thank you, Jon.
It reminds me the importance of paying it forward. I have honestly been struggling lately with this idea. Because so often, I do pay it forward, and pay it forward, and pay it forward. I have often used the analogy of a bucket full of water. Each person has their bucket and their own ladle. We go around in life filling each others buckets. Sometimes, if you fill others buckets and forget to take care of yourself, or others just take your water, you begin to run on empty. Lately, I have felt pretty empty. My folks have been an amazing help, sure. Outside of that.. I feel pretty drained. So out of the blue, Jon filled my bucket. This allows me to continue to pour out to others.
The point of all of this is don't forget to pay it forward. You never know where someone is at in their life and what one kind gesture, big or small can do.
I hope your buckets are overflowing so that you can continue to help others.