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BE AN INFLUENCER

YOU MAY HAVE NOTICED THAT SEVERAL TIMES I’VE REVISITED THOUGHTS FROM WEEKS BACK, AND IT’S NOT BECAUSE I HAVE NOTHING NEW TO WRITE ABOUT. IT’S BECAUSE I SEE VALUE IN, AND EVEN FIND MYSELF NEEDING TO REVISIT THE THOUGHT AS A REMINDER. MANY OF THESE CAN REALLY BE DAILY DISCIPLINES. WE’RE REVISITING A THOUGHT CALLED SIMPLY, “INFLUENCE”, AND YOU’LL NOTICE I RENAMED IT “BE AN INFLUENCER”. AND I’M GOING TO ADD TO IT AS WELL.

I’VE ALWAYS VALUED INFLUENCE AND BEEN A PRETTY STRONG INFLUENCER, BUT AS WE DISCUSSED PREVIOUSLY, MY FRIEND PAUL SMITH BROUGHT TO LIGHT THE REALITY THAT INFLUENCE IS A VERY RELEVANT TOPIC FOR EVERY ONE OF US. WE TEND VERBALLY OR NONVERBALLY TO SET PEOPLE APART AS EITHER “INFLUENCER” OR “NON-INFLUENCER”. THE REALITY IS THAT IN SOME WAY WE ARE ALL INFLUENCERS. WITH OUR WORDS, OUR SILENCE, OUR ACTIONS, OR LACK THERE OF, WE ARE VERY LIKELY INFLUENCING SOMEONE OR SOMETHING. HERE’S WHAT WE HAVE TO ACCEPT: THAT INFLUENCE IS EITHER POSITIVE OR NEGATIVE, THERES REALLY NO MIDDLE GROUND.

ONE OF MY CLOSEST FRIENDS IS A FLIGHT ATTENDANT. SHE DOESN’T GO TO WORK SPECIFICALLY WITH “BE AN INFLUENCER” ON THE AGENDA. BUT, YOU CAN GUARANTEE THAT IN SOME WAY SHE INFLUENCES EVERY PERSON SHE HAS CONTACT WITH. SOMETHING AS SIMPLE AS HER INCREDIBLE SMILE, OR AN ACCIDENTAL FROWN OR EYE ROLL, COULD MAKE OR BREAK SOMEONES DAY.

SHE ONCE TOLD ME A STORY OF A YOUNG GIRL ON THE PLANE WHO WAS FLYING ALONE, AND MEETING HER GRANDMA AT THE DESTINATION AIRPORT. SHE WAS PRETTY CONFIDENT FOR HER AGE AND SHE HAD A FUN LITTLE PERSONALITY. BUT, YOU CAN BET THAT BEHIND IT ALL, SHE HAD SOME FEAR AND UNCERTAINTY. HER FINAL DESTINATION WAS DANA’S LAST LEG FOR THE DAY, SO SHE GUIDED THE GIRL THROUGH THE AIRPORT, MAKING FUN CONVERSATION WITH HER, AND HELPED HER FIND HER GRANDMA. BOTH GRANDMA AND THE GIRL WERE VERY GRATEFUL FOR WHAT SHE DID. SHE’LL LIKELY NEVER SEE THAT GIRL AGAIN, BUT I’M PRETTY CONFIDENT THAT LITTLE GIRL WILL NEVER FORGET HER FLIGHT ATTENDANT THAT NIGHT. AND BY CHOICE, DANA HAD A POSITIVE INFLUENCE IN HER LIFE.

SHE COULD HAVE HURRIED TO GRAB HER BAGS AND BOLTED, BUT INSTEAD SHE TOOK WHAT WAS REALLY
ONLY A FEW EXTRA MINUTES TO INVEST IN THIS YOUNG GIRL AND LEFT THE MARK OF A POSITIVE INFLUENCE, IN THE FORM OF WILLINGNESS TO SERVE OTHERS.

ACCEPT THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE INFLUENCE THAT YOU HAVE AND CHOOSE TO INFLUENCE IN A WAY THAT YIELDS A POSITIVE OUTCOME. MANY OF US HAVE GIFTS THAT ALLOW US TO INFLUENCE CERTAIN GROUPS IN A MUCH MORE DYNAMIC WAY. CAPITALIZE ON THOSE GIFTS AND IMPACT LIVES WITH YOUR POSITIVE ATTITUDE AND INFLUENCE.

BUT EVEN IF YOU DON’T FEEL LIKE YOU SHOULD BE CLASSIFIED AS AN “INFLUENCER”, BELIEVE THAT AT WORK, SCHOOL, SPORTS, CHURCH, FAMILY….WE ARE ALL INFLUENCING EACH OTHER CONTINUOUSLY. EMBRACE THE FACT THAT ONLY YOU HAVE THE POWER TO CHOOSE WHETHER THAT INFLUENCE IS POSITIVE OR NEGATIVE. THIS WEEK, START MAKING A DIFFERENCE ONE LIFE AT A TIME BY CHOOSING TO FOLLOW IN DANA’S FOOTSTEPS, AND HAVE A POSITIVE INFLUENCE ON ANYONE YOU COME IN CONTACT WITH.

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STAYING CONSISTENT....

I'm consistently getting stronger and more energetic.  I'm continuing to walk as much as the weather allows.  My balance and gait have made huge gains and it feels like its still on a slow, but sure, upswing.  I've had a ton of time with my boys and its going quite well!  I can still be dad, still travel and speak, still encoursage and mentor.  I'm a new man, but still able to be Matt!  :-)

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MAKING STRIDES! LITERALLY!

A few weeks ago, I decided I was ready to walk a mile. I set the trip meter on my truck and mapped a loop around my neighborhood and this is my 4th week walking a mile 3 times a week! At first it was a struggle but I felt better today than I have yet and set my time record at 32 minutes!  I'll keep lengthening my strides and trimming that time!  This recovery process isn't over until they put me in a box and cover me with dirt! :-)

We Cannot control what happens to us. We Can control "what happens" to what happens to us.

David Foster

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Quote of the Day

Under normal conditions, you might be good, but you'll never be great. Learn to choose the right path under fire.
David Foster