When you think of someone who is influential, who comes to mind? Is it the President? The CEO of a major company? The pastor of your church? Oprah? What characteristics does one possess in order to be described with the adjective influential?
Well, I think an influential person is one who has a vision. Everything that he or she does is a step towards making that vision a reality. Influential people can clearly communicate their vision and get people to trust them.
I had the opportunity to attend church with a dear friend of mine several months ago. The pastor preached about influence. He reminded the congregation about how easily our lives can be influenced. In contrast, he informed us of the power that we have to influence others. He quoted a shocking statistic in his sermon: “The average person influences approximately 10,000 people in his lifetime.”
Ten thousand? That’s a lot of people! I don’t even think I know 10,000 people. So, how in the world can I influence that many people? I barely have the time to get all of my tasks done in a day, so how do I have the time to influence 10,000 people?
The fact of the matter is that we influence people when we don’t even know that we’re doing it. We influence people by our relationships, the way we dress, what we eat, what we say, and our facial expressions, just to name a few. When I began to think about the opportunities that I have to influence others, these were the first few to enter my mind:
-as a mom
-my position as an educator
-as a friend
-shopping in the store
And those are just the first few things that came to mind. Wow, I am way more influential than I thought. I bet you are, too! Take a minute and think about the power that you have to influence someone’s life. Actively thinking about it will help you make good decisions and be the person you want others to be. Take advantage (in a positive way) of the power you have been given to make this world a better place!