Be the Change
Updated: Sep 21, 2022
It can be overwhelming to think about all the changes we wish to see in the world. There are so many devastating events and practices going on. Many of us have a yearning to contribute, to make things better for those who may be suffering. And it can be hard to know where to begin.
If you’re moved by events happening elsewhere and feel a pull to do something meaningful but you can’t imagine how to start (because the problem is so big and complex)... or you feel too far away (because the problem is happening in a different country)... or you feel like we’re drowning in problems and no amount of action gives you a sense that you’re contributing… rest assured, you can always be part of the solution.
You can have an impact in your own life, right now, and help make the world better for those in front of you – family members, colleagues, pets, literally what’s happening in your own backyard.
You can start where you are, considering what’s in your own heart and seeing what positive change you can make in your daily life. Is the way you’re showing up contributing more love and peace to the world, or more heartache or chaos? Be honest with yourself. When we’re tired or fixated on the stories in our head or even hungry, it shows up in the ways we interact with those around us.
In the early 2000s, The Arbinger Institute, an organization focused on mindset and leadership, published a book called The Anatomy of Peace, which outlines how we can end up perpetuating the very problems we’re trying to solve because we can’t see the ways in which we’re inadvertently contributing to the issue. At the most personal and immediate level, it is extremely helpful in determining…am I going out into the world with a heart at war or a heart at peace?
You can ask yourself…
How am I showing up in this [moment/situation] right now?
What is my intention going into this [meeting/conversation]?
What do I need right now to be fully present?
What is the opportunity right in front of me?
What do I see is needed right now?
Once you’re in touch with the way you’re showing up in any given moment, and consciously aware of what’s in your heart, it becomes easier to be more present to what’s happening in your own life that can use your help.
Instead of straining to see the impact we want to have, or being overwhelmed by the possibilities, we can open ourselves up to the people who need us now. Maybe a sick friend could use a call to cheer her up. Your son may need a hug after a tough day. Your partner might need to talk through a problem at work. When you consciously show up to the people and events happening here, right now, you’re having the impact you’re meant to have in the world. You don’t need to go looking for it.
We’re all here for a reason. “You can’t miss your boat. It’s yours. It stays docked till you’re ready. The only boat you can miss is someone else’s,” says Glennon Doyle. You don’t need to search and grasp for what is meant for you. To make a difference, you only need to be open and see the opportunity right in front of you, and then, as my Mum would say, do it with a good heart.
That looks different for everyone. Sometimes it means going on strike from school on a Friday because you’re distraught by the effects of climate change. Sometimes it means slowing down to listen to someone, to acknowledge their pain. And sometimes it means being moved to help the people in your community create better ways to reduce waste. If you’re present to the opportunities in front of you, all will become clear. You don’t need a plan or a strategy. Just show up.
When you show up, fully present to what’s needed in front of you, the impact you have is profound. You’ll likely never really know the difference that you’ve made in the lives you’ve touched, but you can know that you’re in integrity with yourself. You know when you’ve shown up intentionally and done your best. And that, my friend, is just the kind of change we need in this world.
Sherie is a powerful, CTI-certified coach. Clients who work with her transform in ways they never imagined possible - she has raving fans. Sherie co-leads all of the Change Maker Impact groups and works with individuals and teams too! She brings magic, joy and deep insight to every conversation.