I’ve never worked in a paper clip factory. I never thought about what it would be like to make paper clips all day long. I had not considered what it must be like to have a career solely based on those cartons of curved, organizational magic… that is until I opened my most recent box of paper clips.
Upon lifting the lid to a brand new box, I discovered a very long chain of clips connected to one another. Surely, this is not a normal product of the paper clip making process. Someone somewhere took the time to construct this impressive chain of fasteners. Perhaps their intent was to frustrate the recipient of the chain, or maybe its creation served to pass the time during an unfortunate shut-down at the plant, or it could be that the chain’s maker was just trying to make a connection with someone else in a unique way. Whatever the reason, I was now the intrigued owner of a very long paper clip chain.
When I showed my daughter, she said, “That’s cool, but now you can’t use those paper clips.”
“Why can’t I use them?” was my reply.
“Because then you wouldn’t have the chain anymore,” she stated and walked away.
I guess she was right. I needed a paper clip, not a chain of them, but there were Intentergy moments in those links.
Each time I remove a clip, I can let my imagination wonder back to the chain’s maker and feel connected to someone who had no idea where their creation was going. I can see my progress in using the clips, just as he or she felt satisfaction in adding to their succession.
Maybe I’m trying too hard to find the positive in a box of paper clips that require me to dismantle its contents, but at least it’s a carton containing links to happiness, as opposed to fetters of frustration.
Have you ever discovered a mistake or an extra in a product you purchased that brought you joy?
If you have, you know the thrill of discovering something special. Maybe it wasn’t something you really wanted to find, but hopefully it was something that made you laugh or feel special because somehow you were the lucky recipient of that anomaly. Fate is funny that way.
Today I encourage you to think about the links to happiness that have connected in your life. Perhaps it is a coincidental friendship or an extra cookie in your snack pack, whatever the discovery, I hope you savor the sweetness of that random blessing or encounter. Know that happiness connects us in more ways than we can imagine. We need to allow gratitude or joy to be our response to the unexpected discoveries of life. Letting little surprises connect you to excitement and enthusiasm is the surest way to find the biggest joy.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. Have you ever worked in a paper clip factory?
P.P.S. These paper clips were made in America.