You Are Influential…

Seriously, you are influential.  Unless you live in total isolation, your actions throughout the day have a ripple effect.  Do you ever think about the effect of your actions on others?

Take a minute and visualize every action and interaction you had today.  Who were you with and what were you doing?  Where did you go and why did you take that route?  Where were you when you woke up this morning?  Were you home alone or with someone?  Were you in a hotel somewhere on business?

Was your first contact with someone today in person or via phone or internet?  I’ve heard that the first thing many people do is check their facebook account or e-mail…..that’s what I do.  But a virtual connection can be influential too.  Were the first things you shared today positive or negative?  How far do you think those emotions traveled?  In our hyper-connected world, your actions could have impacted tens, hundreds, or even thousands of people!  Think about that the next time you hit the “share” button!

I suppose most of us follow a pretty set routine.  Did you stop somewhere on the way to work for breakfast or coffee?  Did you even acknowledge the person who took your order, much less smile or say hello?  Can you imagine how it feels to be virtually invisible ….unacknowledged ….all day long?  A friend that I deeply admire has a gift of engaging everyone he meets in conversation.  There is no such thing as a stranger in his life.  With incredible ease he introduces himself to the waiter at the coffee shop counter and calls them by name (he is observant and sees name tags).  I’ve observed the immediate smile when he addresses them by name….he certainly had an influence on that person’s life at that moment!

As you drove to work, were you a courteous driver, or aggressive?  How did your actions influence other commuters?  Did your driving elicit a “thank you”  or an angry “#^&@” response?

How was your voice today?  Did you smile or laugh while you were using the phone today?  Did you sound impatient or angry?  Would you have acted the same way in person, or is it OK to act like a jerk to someone you will never meet in real life?  Did your voice have influence?

Are you a parent?  How did you influence your children today?  On reflection, would you do anything differently?

Are you a writer….a blogger?  Do you really think that the only people influenced by your writing were those who commented?  I think your words could have traveled around the world twice and back again!  Your thoughts could have inspired someone to start a new career path.  Your words could have raised someone up from the depths of depression or brought hope where there was previously despair.

To very seriously paraphrase Newton’s Law….”for every action there is a reaction!”  (Sorry Mr. Newton….I’m just trying to make a point here).

I want to leave this thought with you today…..our actions have consequences!  We have a significant responsibility each day of our lives to be aware of our influence, and to use it for positive good.  After all, “What goes around, comes around!”

These positive thoughts brought to you by Tom Burns, Seller of things essential to life as we know it….  Connect with me at


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