Making an Impact
Making an impact in the world is something we all strive to achieve. It’s part of growing and defining ourselves.
While we often strive to make our mark on the world through meaningful work, there is another way to make the world a little better and different. Leave a lasting impact by inspiring others.
Inspiring others has a ripple effect. As we inspire others to succeed, to dream, to be their very best selves, they in turn inspire others, and the trend continues on. The effects are far-reaching and well outside of our normal sphere of influence.
You may be thinking, Omozua, how can I inspire others in my little corner of the world?
It’s not as large of a feat as you may think. Pause to think of all the roles you have in your life—entrepreneur, manager, small business owner, employee, colleague, parent, sibling, friend. Then take a moment to think of all the opportunities you have, places where you can inspire others—your place of business, in your neighborhood, at the organizations you are involved with, out shopping, at your children’s school or their after-school activities. So many opportunities to inspire, uplift, or engage people to share their goals and visions, so they can become their best selves.
What do you do to be inspiring?
As with everything, it starts from within. Here are 5 tips to help you become an inspiring person.
1. Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.
Sometimes it feels like our world has become a little colder and crueler and quicker to judge without all the facts. It seems everyone is so focused on their own lives and personal devices where they can communicate instantaneously. However, they neglect those in the immediate space around them.
Human nature makes us all crave kindness and respect. So don’t be stingy with your kindness. Smile more, thank people more, show more grace and forgiveness when people let you down.
To inspire others you must show genuine interest and care in them. Show people care in your words. Your smiles, caring concern, and positive energy will be returned to you. The more kindness and enthusiasm you share everyday will inspire others to be more compassionate in their lives and interactions. Let the kindness and inspiration domino effect keep moving along!
2. Open your door, and listen.
Always keep an open door invitation to everyone you meet. Personally welcome others, and listen to their needs. This allows for a healthy line of communication.
When someone does come to you, actively listen to understand others’ points of view to fully understand the meaning. Make eye contact when they come to you with their ideas, concerns or problems. Ask follow-up questions to show you care and want to understand where they are coming from so you can help, if you are able.
3. Lift people up, earn their trust, give them accolades.
Trust takes a long time to earn and build, but you can lose it in a moment. So steer clear of unnecessary drama or gossip. Focus on being the positive influencer who others are unafraid to approach and confide in. Remember the old advice which has true staying power, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.”
Genuine compliments go a long way; don’t be afraid to give them. If it’s not positive, don’t say it. No one likes to be criticized, so if you don’t have anything positive to contribute, it’s better to say nothing at all in most instances. You can’t inspire or lead others if you are constantly critical or speak maliciously to others.
From time to time we do have to deliver constructive criticism because we can’t grow and learn if we don’t know we’re making mistakes. Just make sure it is positive and upbeat. Compliment them on past work, then focus on the project at hand and how it might be improved upon, and thank them for their efforts and support. Celebrate their successes publicly, if you can. Acknowledge their contributions and give them full credit where it’s due to show you appreciate their efforts. This will motivate them to be ambitious and strive for the stars.
4. Treat everyone with respect.
Regardless of our gender, race, religion, or beliefs, we are all equal. Treat and care for others as you would want to be treated. Without taking into account their background or circumstances, these have no influence on their quality as a person.
5. Be authenticate, be brave.
None of us are perfect. We all fall, and we all make mistakes. You will inspire more people if you don’t take everything too seriously and or personally.
Don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself, smile, and accept your shortcomings. By having a healthy sense of your failings and viewing them as part of life, you will become more approachable to others. They will feel like they can connect with you on a deeper level. More people will feel free to be themselves and open up to you, when they feel comfortable to do so.
Authenticity inspires people to live and move forward. Your optimism is powerful, contagious, and can bind others together during challenging times. Remember each day to breathe deeply, laugh, and be yourself. When others see you smiling, it makes them feel more optimistic and secure. Learn to stand your ground through good times, troubling times, and for what you believe in. Stand firm if you want to show others that even the worst situations can be overcome with positive thinking, a never-give-up attitude, and focus on improvement. You will inspire others to do the same.
The best part of inspiring others is seeing them grow and change as they become stronger and more confident. Sometimes when the road is hard, we need to pick them up, dust them off, and encourage them as they set off on their journey once more. There’s nothing as fulfilling as celebrating with them when they’ve reached a hard-earned goal, because then the tables have turned and they’ve inspired you.
Start inspiring others today.