From its inception in 1945, Guideposts has always been about sharing the inspiring stories of others. Now, with our new Everyday Greatness series, readers will have the chance to share their stories about the heroes in their lives. Guideposts Books editor and Everyday Greatness team leader Tarice Gray shares how this exciting initiative builds community, hope and inspiration.
What is Everyday Greatness?
This is an initiative about stories that have touched people’s lives, that commemorate an experience where they’ve found heroism in their lives. Extraordinary acts of kindness and courage that they can recall and relive through our website.
It might be about the neighbor who you notice is taking another neighbor to the grocery store after a paralyzing accident, without being asked and without compensation. Or a fantastic story of someone who rushed into a burning building or an everyday person risking their own well-being to save another life. Those type of stories are all around us and so we are creating a community that celebrates that and encourages other people to do the same.
How do people send in their stories?
That’s exciting! Have you had any experiences with everyday greatness in your own life?
My grandmother was a part of this project where they created these quilts in a tiny little church in Cleveland and then I learned what they were for, children in other countries, other states, people who didn’t have the ability to buy blankets to keep warm. If you can just imagine ninety-year old fingers working through and creating a system where they just cranked out these quilts year after year. Without any fanfare, without any notoriety just so they could supply warmth to someone in need. I think that’s extraordinarily kind.
You mentioned that ‘Everyday Greatness’ is going to be a community. How are you building this community?
Through word of mouth, through sharing of stories. The idea is to come to the page and see and experience the stories on the website and be inspired to share your own and be inspired to share with others. The idea is to keep coming back and finding yourself and something you can relate to and applaud. That creates community. Sharing stories and joined experience is what creates and sustains a community.
How can people keep up with ‘Everyday Greatness’ and find out about new stories on the page?
We have social media, tweets and Facebook posts to remind people to come back to the page. If you submit a story through firstname.lastname@example.org, someone will get back with you and if we accept your story, we’ll send you an email that says when your story is coming out, be sure to share it with your friends. It’s also going to be in our newsletters.
What else should people know about this initiative?
It’s always nice to remember that we learn by sharing even more than doing. We learn by other’s experiences. We can be inspired by them. It’s a way to be encouraged and to encourage other people. Little things mean a lot.