“You are not paying attention,” said the frustrated wife after realizing she was saying the same thing repeatedly and her husband was not listening.
“Can I have your attention?” Begged the teacher, pleading with his pupils to focus their distracted minds back on the class discussion.
“Please, pay more attention,” requested the manager of his employee, hoping that she would do the job better for once.
Let’s talk about paying attention. Because while it may seem like a small thing, it can have a profound impact.
When we pay attention, we are better partners, friends, neighbors and colleagues.
But it’s not only about paying attention to others. So often, we ignore ourselves, and we don’t realize our gifts, strengths and potential. Paying attention to ourselves can have a dramatic positive impact on our lives.
So here is a reminder of the greatness we all possess.
Currently, we are in the Sefirat HaOmer period, the season when we count the Omer every day. This mitzvah is also mentioned in this week’s parsha.
After we count the Omer, we say a special prayer:
“Master of the universe, You have commanded us through Moses, Your servant, to count Sefirat HaOmer… Therefore, may it be Your will, Lord our God and God of our fathers, that in the merit of the Sefirat HaOmer which I counted today… May abundant bounty thereby be bestowed upon all the worlds.”
Let’s read this sentence again and pay attention to every word.
Because we fulfilled this mitzvah of counting the Omer, we ask God for “abundant bounty upon all the worlds.” (In this prayer, the term “all the worlds” refers to the four spiritual realms, also known as “the four worlds.” Our Mitzvah impacts our physical world, but also the spiritual worlds.)
Just one mitzvah, with so much power!
Imagine walking around with the feeling that you are the one who brought abundant bounty to this world. This is such an empowering feeling that will make us happier and will also motivate us to do more because the world needs so many more blessings.
Indeed, a little attention can go a long way.
May we always remember our own greatness, the greatness of others, and may we use our power to continue making a tremendous impact on “all the worlds.”
Rabbi Mendy Kaminker is the rabbi of Chabad of Hackensack. He welcomes your comments at [email protected]