Are you making a difference in anyone’s life? What about a young person’s?
This month, we are celebrating Youths and invite you to take a step to make a difference in the life of even one.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honourable, to be compassionate to make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”
Are You Making A Difference?
For about five years, I was a very active member of the Kiwanis. I volunteered on various committees, chaired a couple of Boards within my club and took numerous outings in support of club initiatives and projects.
Nothing else compares to the feeling of fulfilment I got every third of each month. We would visit the club’s adopted Golden Aged Home to care for the residents and spend quality time with them. The interaction with them was indescribable. The value was immeasurable. Their faces glowed when we shampooed and groomed their hair; their grateful but feeble hands shook ours after they were fed and the emotional expressions of gratitude upon receiving goodies baskets – these were our rewards for making a difference, one life at a time.
“It’s the action, not the fruit of the action that’s important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time that there’ll be any fruit. But that doesn’t mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.” Mahatma Gandhi
Making A Difference – One Youth At A Time
There was a young university student from my Home Town who one day visited me at my office. This 6-foot, a well-poised young man knocked slightly on my door and inquired whether I would like to purchase chocolates.
My friends know that I am intolerant of chocolate but I decided to patronize him as he was so polite and without pressure approached me. My intention went beyond that, as my plan was to pass on the sweet delights to the chocolate lovers in the office and there are quite a few.
The purchase surprised him and he found it difficult to hide his emotions. After completing my purchase, he asked whether I had a minute to spare. His eager eyes told a story. He wanted advice.
Basically, I found out that he was selling chocolate to raise money to complete his college education. His mother (a single parent) had suddenly fallen on extremely hard times. She was working so hard that she had a mental breakdown and could no longer work. The choice for Adam (not his real name) was to either quit college or find some other means to raise his tuition. Quitting would have had a more devastating effect on not only him but his mother, so he stayed in college.
It Often Takes Very Little
I became one of his regular customers as well as a fierce cheerleader. Adam, through the patronage from others within my office, the adjoining offices and me was able to purchase a motorcycle (at a discounted price, virtually a gift). Through our influence, as an insurance agency, he was able to insurance for his motorcycle again at a very discounted rate. Needless to say, at the end of each semester, Adam took his “Report Card” to us and kept us updated on his progress. He promised all of us that he will never let us down.
Are you making a difference, one life at a time?
Mentoring is one of my passions. Witnessing the achievements of those I mentor gives me unspeakable joy. Frequently I have asked others whether if they feel that they could make a difference in the world. More often than not the response is “No.” Well, guess what? They are wrong.
Not only can each of us make a difference but our influence could have a far greater impact on a greater number of people than we could ever imagine. Stop and think about your potential circle of influence: your employees, co-workers, bosses, vendors, customers, family, friends. Lots and lots of people. You may have already influenced dozens more without even realizing it.
The Universe supports all our efforts geared towards the advancement of humanity. As Martin Luther King said: “No work is insignificant. All labour that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken painstaking excellence.”
So RISE and RESOLVE to “Make a difference, one life at a time”