The other day when I shared about human trafficking (you can see that post here.) I really started thinking about the idea of an influence. I really started thinking about this idea of influence because bloggers who share products and things are referred to “influencers” in the blogging community. And I began to ask myself, what am I doing with my influence?
No, this post is not just for bloggers by any means because we all have an influence of some kind. It can be because we are in a position of leadership or because we are a parent and influence our kids. It could be because we have to manage people or we’re on a sports team that requires team work. It could be because we have created our own influence or because we are around people every day and it just happened naturally. Regardless of where you are in life, you have an influence. Now, the tricky part is what kind of influence do you have on people?
There are good influences and bad ones, just like everything else. There are people who spread kindness, lead well, treat others with respect, have passions that they share about, and who are just genuine good people. Then there are people who are negative, complain a lot, thrive off of bringing others down, do things they know they shouldn’t, and even those people have an influence. We, as people, by nature are going to follow something, especially in this day and age. I mean look at social media, we “follow” people everyday. In order to understand your influence, it’s good to check who you’re following. Who we follow is who we are drawn to and ultimately what we produce.
But instead of focusing on who we follow, let’s focus on who are we leading. If you look in your circle of life *cue Lion King*…but really, if you look at your circle of influence, who are these people? Are they your kids, students, interns, employees, readers, etc? And then ask yourself what are you doing with your influence? What are you adding to their life? What are you teaching them? If you had one hour to spend with these people in your influence, what would you tell them? What would you teach them? That is what you should be using your influence for, those things that you care so deeply about that if you only had an hour, you’d share.
For me, I realized that I was almost hiding behind my influence. I wanted to make sure that everyone was enjoying my blog so it would grow, that I was sharing good content, and that it all looked alright from the outside. I was hiding behind the image of my influence. But when I was writing that post about Human Trafficking, I couldn’t put my computer down. I wanted to keep writing because I was so passionate about it and so eager to share, in hopes that sharing would save someone’s life. That’s a lot weighing on an influence…someone’s life. What if someone’s life was weighing on your influence? Would you do something differently?
I want to make sure that I am using my influence to change the world, to change my community, and change myself. I want to bring about positivity, vulnerability, and rawness. I want to share my heart and my passions, which comes very natural to me, but can be a turn off for others. I’m the type of person that doesn’t just care, I care a whole lot. I was hiding that part of me and for what? Fear. Doubt. Worry. Shame. Can anyone else relate?
What is something you are passionate about? Maybe it doesn’t fit into your niche or your preferred lifestyle, but you really care about it. Share it. Use your influence because you never know the impact you might have. I sat in front of my computer screen the other day asking myself over and over again, what am I really using my influence for? Who am I using my influence for? Ask yourself these same questions then step foot onto your platform of influence and share that, be that, and promote that thing that brings your joy, makes your heart race, and that you love.
Be extremely mindful this week and be on the lookout for your places on influence. You may be surprised by some of them and some of them may come as no shock at all. Then start to assess how you might be using your influence and what ways you’d like to use it differently.
Thanks for reading my word vomit lol. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about this for a couple days and thought I’d share my heart and my thoughts! I’d love to hear in the comments some of the ways you are using your influence for good!