Every human is like a planet, in that it seems that we have our own gravitational pull, in regards to influence. History shows us also that the dominant aren’t always the prominent. Emperors, Kings, and Presidents have been influenced by those with less than one tenth of their own power.
In this second article, I’d like to look at our personal influence. I believe that everyone in life can make lasting change in our world. The key is how we use this natural ability God has given us. By that I don’t mean that anyone’s intent would be unethical. I believe that most individuals want to bring about positive effects.
What concerns me more is that people either ignore their ability to influence, or feel too insignificant to pursue it. Every human heart is capable of love, every human voice makes a sound, and every human living breathes. In short, anyone can share their love, their voice, and their life with others.
You are significant because you are here. God placed you where you are, to be uniquely you, and to reach others. Too often we are drawn to the scene of big impact scenarios and we measure our own days against them. This is a enormous mistake for one reason, we forget that those big events are the result of several small ones. Your small steps now, lay the groundwork for someone else’s massive steps later.
If you are unaware of your influence, consider a comic called Garfield minus Garfield. It’s the same comic, except Garfield is missing. Without all of the characters, it doesn’t make sense. You are a character in your own life, and when you don’t actively participate, you create a vacuum. Someone or something is going to fill it, why shouldn’t you?
Three ways we can influence others is by being mindful of our attitudes, alphabets, and actions. An approachable attitude is the best type to have. It may not be a perfect one, we all have bad days. If however, people feel that our door is always open, it will promote connecting.
You can’t benefit who you don’t connect with, and you can only truly connect with those you care about. Caring for others means making time for them, even with leading busy lives. When we are never too busy to help, then we will be sources of refuge that add value to others.
The alphabet that our letters originate from was made up of symbols that represented pictures. To this day, our words still forge images. Every word we speak forms more than a picture of ourselves, but of our view of life. Our words reveal who is important to us, what are our priorities, and how we intend to achieve our goals. Words can either be tools or weapons, the choice is ours.
If our attitudes and vocabularies are the foundation of our influence, our actions hang the doors. My Dad, a very wise man, never tried to convince me how smart he was, he didn’t have too. Dad, a hard worker, never had to inform me of how hard he did his job. Finally, he never had to tell me that he loved our Mother, I saw it.
I saw it because he was there every morning, went to work each day, and came home each night. One of the last things he would do when he left was kiss Mom goodbye, it was also one of his first acts returning home. The hours he spent at work weren’t about making money, they were about providing for us. When Mom and Dad went to do something fun, they made sure we went with them.
We were never an after thought in their lives, instead after God, we were their first thoughts. If you’re doing your best, then you are already influencing others. My goal isn’t to convince you to start, but to make you aware that you already have.
Don’t measure your influence by what you are not doing. God called you to make a difference by being yourself, so do what only you can. Your accomplishments impact your world, and that is exactly what we are called to do. We can only change our corner of this world, but if everyone improves their own section of Earth, then we will have changed the world.
Tomorrow we’ll talk about something I call extended influence, or influence multiplied. I look forward to sharing part three with you.