Most of us do what we do with something in mind. Whether we’re trying to get from point A to point B, to forge a new path or to accomplish something to make your heart a little brighter we have a path in mind, we accept and recognize the interactions along the way. Almost like watching a slot car in a track, we see the distance, we see the bumps in the track and we see where we hit the walls… but what if those are people. We recognize our view of the interaction with other people, but we have no way of measuring or understanding their impact of our interaction… now, five minutes from now or five years from now.
Other than the standard comments or complaints, we don’t get much feedback in this life… especially in the long term. Feedback on previous interactions can make a whole new focus in your life. Imagine writing a note to someone only to find out they’ve held on to it for 15 years. Envision the discussion with your child about an event in their childhood where you were having an issue due to your own childhood traumas only to find out that your child thought you were mad at them. Or the friend or sibling that quotes you and tells you how it changed how they viewed things in their life.
Our personal perspectives of events shape us. Something small to you can be a pivotal moment for someone else. Finding out how it shaped others can empower, or humble or motivate or even free us.
As you’ll see in this clip, Whoopi Goldberg planned to use her acting skills to be a black female role model (which she’s done superbly IMO), the impact she had on one particular gentleman however… well, even her character Guinan didn’t see that coming.
If someone has touched you profoundly, consider the gift of sharing it with them. They may have no idea that their words or deeds have made such an impact on you. Such a gift can greatly impact their life as it has yours and deepen their self worth more than you can imagine.
In the meantime, keep being an inspiration and a mentor everyday. You never know when you will make the difference in someone’s life when you least expect it.