I think it is fair to say that most of us don’t believe we have to power to change the world. I think this leads to the thinking that we don’t have much influence at all. “How is little old me going to make a difference?” Loren and I watch documentaries a lot and we got on a kick of watching drug documentaires. One thing that stuck out to me was that many of the drug dealers said “sure I feel bad about dealing, but if I don’t someone else will.” The mentality that our actions don’t matter drives me crazy. We think well someone else out there is doing it, so it’s ok for me to, and vice versa. We get wrapped up in the big picture that seems so un-fixable and forget that each one of us fall into the big picture to make it big. If we each choose to do something even if we don’t believe it will make a difference, I truly believe together we would make a difference.
I keep thinking about the story of the boy throwing starfish back into the sea. Someone asked him what he was doing and he replied he was throwing the starfish back to the sea since the tide washed them onto shore. Since they couldn’t get back on their own they would die. The person told the boy there are thousands, you won’t be able to make much of a difference. The boy picked up a starfish, threw it in, and said “it made a difference for that one.”
I think if we keep that mentality we can make an impact on the world. One thing is for sure, if we don’t try at all we really won’t make an impact. There are lots of people who get big and make a huge difference on the world. Then there are everyday people like me who wonder how in the world we will ever make change. Whether we want to believe it or not we make an impact every single day. We touch people through our unique stories. We impact our children and friends. We make more of an impact than we know. Imagine if none of us did anything. None of us gave money to charities, we didn’t visit the elderly in nursing homes, we didn’t pay attention to our kids, we didn’t go to work, we didn’t take a shower :0 Can you imagine what life would be like?
Clearly the belief that we don’t make a difference is insane. We make a difference by simply getting out of bed and starting our day. Sure many things don’t seem big. Especially when we begin to compare ourself to others. I think the fall of all difference making is comparison. There are those giving millions to good causes when I have mere hundreds to give. There are those moving their families across oceans to mission to less fortunate when I barely make it through a day as a homemaker at times. There are those who have a following of thousands and thousands and I have a couple hundred social media followers. When I look at it that way, it seems pretty hopeless. But when I look at it through different eyes I see hope. I see all those people as people called to do what they are meant to do. You see none of us are called to do the same thing. None of us are called on the exact same path as someone else. If we were all called to do the same thing, be the same person, and make the same money, we would be a bunch of mindless people and nothing would get done. When I accept the fact that I am doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing and forget about what everyone else is doing, I can grasp the fact that I can make a change if I want to. We all have a choice. We can chose to complain about our situation and believe the lie that we don’t matter. Or we can chose to get off our rear and go do something. To say goodbye to negativity and hello to opportunities. To say I made a difference for that starfish even if I can’t get to them all. If I hadn’t helped any they all would have died. To be at peace with what we can do and not stress out over all we can’t do.
You my friend can and do make a difference. No matter what you do, do it. Even if it seems small and meaningless it is still something and there is hope. Maybe you don’t feel called to try and end fast fashion but you do feel passionate about something else. That’s ok. I really do believe we are each given a different calling and if we all applied those callings we could make a huge difference. If we all DID something instead of believing we can’t make a difference, change would happen. Even the small day to day things like the endless laundry is making a difference. It is making a difference because you are caring for your family. Don’t let yourself get discouraged because it feels meaingless. Be encouraged because even the small things make a difference. By taking the stand to believe that you matter, you will start to feel like you do. The laundry will look less meaningless when you realize that it DOES make a difference to do it. When I get bogged down by feeling like my day didn’t count, I look back on it and try to view it in a different light. Tomorrow is another day to do more. None of us are super heroes but with the right attitude and a little determination we can be difference makers.
The power of making a difference comes when we believe we can.
I think we can all make a difference. If you want to share your difference follow me @darcyschock on Instagram and use #differencebyone to inspire others to follow their passion. Because every single day each one of us make a difference if it feels significant or not. Why not share it to inspire all of us to do better one person at a time.
I want to see the difference you are making whether that is sitting on the floor playing with your kids to feeding hungry in Haiti.