Word-Of-the-Week #802: Influence

December 19, 2019 by  

Influence – having an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something.

When was the last time you influenced someone? Are you generous in giving praise or encouragement instead of criticism? Do you believe that you are capable of making a difference?

This is the 2nd half of “How to Make a Difference to the World” by Mark Foo.

To recap: “Many people believe that they don’t have what it takes to make a difference to the world. They believe only people like Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Theresa, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, and the likes, are capable of making a difference.

The truth is, every one of us is put in this world to contribute and make a difference to the world in our own unique way. It need not be anything out of the world. It just needs to be something you do with the intention of ‘doing good’.

  1. Empower Other People

“Abilities wither under criticism; they blossom under encouragement.” – Dale Carnegie

You can change the world by helping one person at a time. One of the ways to help someone is to empower the person. But how do you empower a person? Well, one of the ways is to be generous in giving praise and encouragement instead of criticism.

By praising and encouraging the person, you’d have helped him/her to accomplish what he/she is meant to be, and that would lead to more value being added to the world.

  1. Seek to Make a Long-Lasting Effect

“The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches but to reveal to him his own.” – Benjamin Disraeli

This is Mr Disraeli’s version of ‘give a man a fish; you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.’

The good that we seek to do will make more of a difference when there’s a long-lasting effect rather than a temporary effect. For example, if we make contributions to build a school, it will benefit many people for years to come.

And when more people receive education, they will in turn provide more value to the world.

  1. Stop Whining and Do Something

“If you have time to whine and complain about something then you have the time to do something about it.” – Anthony J. D’Angelo

All the whining and complaining in the world is not going to make a difference to the world. It will only drain you of your precious energy from doing things that do make a difference.

Instead of whining and complaining, seek to use the time more productively by engaging in activities that matter. When it comes to making a difference, nothing matters more than taking actions.

  1. Lead the Way

“A good example has twice the value of good advice.” – Author Unknown

Other than doing things to make a difference, we should also seek to influence others to start doing things that make a difference. And the best way to convince other people is to lead by example.

Start doing whatever is within your ability today. Start showing more concern and love to the people around you. Start to make monthly donations to your favorite charity. Start putting more effort in your work to increase the value output.

Every effort counts, no matter how small and insignificant it may seem. Just do something, and do something good.

This week’s focus is on influence. Do you lead by setting a good example? Are you engaging in activities with the intention of ‘doing good’? How would it make you feel to contribute to something that had a long-lasting effect?

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