I want you to visualize that you are standing side-by-side with a group of people. In each person’s hand is a rope tying you to your neighbors with the rope taunt between each individual. The rope is now connecting you to the person on your left and to the person on your right. At this point I want you to consider the following situation: “What would happen if you were to take a big step forward?”
As you step forward the people who are immediately to your left and right will feel the pull immediately and strongly. Those on further down the line will feel the pull but not as strongly. It’s the old “action-reaction” you may remember from high school science classes.
What does this have to do with Positive Influence? Glad you asked. View the rope as a metaphor for everything you do, say or think or for that matter what you don’t do, say or think. That is your legacy and impact not only on you but also on others and to posterity. Every action or inaction on your part affects those around you in a ripple-like effect.
If you consider another perspective in the rope analogy, the thickness of the rope would indicate the strength of the impact you have on others. Some influences might have the strength of a mountain climbing rope; others might just barely be seen like fishing line. In either case, whether visible or not, you play a definitive role in developing others around you and they in turn will shape others.
It’s how we use that rope and how we monitor its use. Are you intentional in making sure that your thoughts, deeds and actions are consistent and leading others to a better place in life and business, or do you cast your lines of influence without thought?
Think about those in your past and their effect on you and then since everything you say, do and think, or don’t say, do or think really does make a difference, what is the total effect on the hundreds of people who have been impacted by you in your lifetime? What if you were held accountable… and the people you interacted with had to provide witness for your influence…your rope tricks? What would they and those that follow say?
We can do nothing about our past except learn from it but today is a new day. The rope trick is to remember all the ways we are tied to each other and then act accordingly.
Positive Influence Steps
- Look at your history and examine how other people have impacted your life, both good and bad. What can you learn from this and apply to your future actions?
- Look at your present situation and see how your actions are influencing people at this very moment. Are you making a positive change in their lives? Can you find a few people who will be honest and let you know your impact?
- Seeing the connection we have with one another personally and by means of current technology (i.e. cell phones, social media, television, e-mail), how can you improve your connections and form a more positive influence in the lives of others?
- Monitor yourself for a week. What do you allow to influence you and what are your thoughts, deeds, and speech.
(*this article was part of the Positive Influence newsletter series)
Sometimes the ropes that tie us to others go unnoticed. It's time to check out what influences we exert through our rope tricks.