Do we know what really matters? We may think we do. A look at what matters the most to each and every person.

Even though we are diligent every day to focus on what’s important, if asked what matters most, many of us have to stop, pause and think about the right answer. We surround ourselves with responsibility, and as a result, we feel pride and worthiness. Surrounding ourselves with friends and loved ones, we feel cared for. We support a cause, a mission to satisfy our need to be a part of a successful and healthy nation and planet. Backing organizations that build a safer place for others. Reinforcing ideal behaviors to align with groups that are doing everything they can to save our planet. We have become a society that is more than willing to engage in the cause that we believe will support our freedom and well-being. Rightly so, we celebrate the opportunity for mankind to thrive. In doing so, we feel that we are focused on what matters. To all of us, and to each of us individually.


Once we surpass the basic needs of survival, we seek the opportunity to embrace freedom and the individual right of choice. In doing so, we can easily confirm the well-stated fact that what matters most is connection. For women, it’s said to be friendship. For men, it’s said to be commitment. While this is all so very true,  there is far more beneath the surface that is often overlooked.  Is it because we live the life of a busy-bee, constantly moving to achieve our industrious goals? Maybe. Is it because we are conditioned to believe that life is meant to be experienced a specific way? Possibly. Whatever the reason, it is deeper than we are allowing ourselves to experience.


The depth of an iceberg is an analogy often used to express where the truth is.


The “I’m flying” scene in the movie Titanic is iconic. Two people embracing how the external world makes them feel bonds them in a way that they become wide open to freedom and possibility. We have all felt this high at one time or another. When we do, we are curious and filled with the bravery we need to go after more. Like the characters in the movie, with open arms, we embrace freedom, love for others and a new found love for ourselves. It’s a wonderful experience that can easily encourage a belief in magic or wonder. Part of the storyline in the movie, deep beneath the surface, is often overlooked. While standing in a place of great freedom, the characters engage in gratitude for one another, connection and commitment. In doing so, they are unable to see the danger ahead. The part of the iceberg that is beneath the surface. The part that matters the most.

We don’t live in a scene from our favorite movies. We don’t live within the storylines written for us. We live in a world that we individually create and share with others. Be it family, friends, missions, or the dream of the planet, we live in a world that we create to satisfy what matters most. What matters most is that “we” matter.

What matters most is that “we” matter.

In all that we do, we can achieve a sense of gratitude for service, charity, receiving, and giving. We feel gratitude for love because that’s what is beneath the surface. Love. When we give, we receive. When we serve, we receive. When we love, we receive. And in receiving, we are rewarded with the knowledge that we matter.

Life can seem like a cruel joke to some. To others, it’s a journey, filled with experiences that share wisdom and knowledge. The know-how in what works and doesn’t work in our never-ending quest for joy and happiness. To all of us, beneath the surface, is the innate desire to matter. Why else would we be here?


Leigh Burton: Author, International Speaker, NLP Practitioner, Cognitive Behavioral Therapist, Emotional Health Coach, Acceptance Commitment Therapist, an expert in letting go, and a lover of life.  www.leighburton.com


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