“Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing.” Albert Schweitzer
How we wish we had the power to influence others. We’ve all thought about it. We would fix this and that and restructure things and be considered the greatest man or woman that ever lived. We would be more wonderful than spider man or any sports hero. People would wait on our every word. The issues we would transform and the huge number of people we would change.
The odd thing is we do inspire others every single day. We just are not aware of who or when or where. Sometimes we talk something over with a friend and of course we believe we made a difference and we are happy with ourselves but most of the time we would admit that others really don’t listen to us. Again I’d reiterate the fact that every one of us offers a role model for others to follow.
It is like placing more on our shoulders than we probably want but the truth is we have that power we just choose at times to refrain from using it. It is difficult to know when it is advisable to offer advice or help of any kind to another. I agree. There are times when others flat out refuse any help and are almost offended if we offer. I must admit there are many times when I have refused another’s offer of aid because I had to prove I could do it myself. Most of these times I had to go back and fix it using the othr person’s suggestions. Sometimes I even admit I was going to attempt their advice next.
Why we refuse help must have to do with ego. We don’t want another thinking we are less than they are. We’re always trying to prove our worth. How sad that we can’t see our value. In all situations we can effect another, especially if we believe in what we are saying or doing. Maybe that is the key. People know if we mean what we say and have faith in what we are doing. That is when they are willing to follow us.
It doesn’t have to be in big things and maybe that is why we miss the signs. We suggest a product to buy based on our past use of it. We suggest a place to visit or a restaurant based on our happiness and the good food we received. We forget about these small instances and we don’t count them as anything. They are important. they reveal to us the fact that this person trusts us and our judgments. Of course the real nitty gritty stuff such as who to date or steer clear of is another story. The truth is our advice or suggestions will not go unheard. They stay deep in the background of our friend’s mind, to be pulled out at a later date if needed. That is inspiration and trust. Maybe we are wrong about the situation but if we are correct our friend will come to that knowledge and follow our advice.
It isn’t wise to drink when we are teenagers. I remember one young man who walked his freind who happened to be a girl, home from a party when she had too much to drink. There were many others who were disappointed because they had hoped for a different outcome. I was impressed with this act and thought what a fine person he is. He had a bearing on my life but he was never aware of it.
A young seven year old gave up her balloon to my three year old daughter who had been crying about not getting one. The entire class had one and she was upset. The remarkable courage and benevolence in a young child was impressive to see. I know parents put themselves last on a daily basis and this is remarkable. They may not think of themselves as examples but they are. So many of us who have been there and done that are aware of how tired and frustrating parenting can be yet parents give until they are ready to collapse.
Parents may encourage other parents who are at their wits end and without any patience left to hang on a bit longer. This saves the family from what might have been a nasty situation. Whenever we keep our patience one minute more, forestall our anger one more time, forgive again or refrain from judging another who we believe deserves it, we have offered a grace filled example of courage and goodness. Maybe it is strangers who are watching or othr relatives and friends it doesn’t matter. The idea is our goodness resonates forward as much as any good deed.
I always recall a friend who believes she does nothing for others yet she will never say no. This doesn’t appear to her to be commendable yet I find it so worthy of mentioning. I guess what I have finally figured out was the importance of our everyday actions which motivate others without a doubt. Hopefully they will always be meritous activities because dreadful actions are also being observed. Children are the biggest mimics of our actions and words.
I remember one school day at the end of the year how a young girl saw a spider walking along the floor and yelled “eek there is a spider”. Another young boy yelled “I will step on it.” At that moment two of the kids including the young girl shouted, “No, we will put him outside.” I was so pleased because in my classroom we always put the insects outside without harming them. I was impressed that they corrected each other and respected the life of the bug. They had learned a lesson well.As you hear the familiar words tumbling from your child’s mouth it makes you remember to keep your words and actions gentle because you actually wield a lot of impact.
“Parents must lead by example. Don’t use the cliche; do as I say and not as I do. We are our children’s first and most important role models.” Lee Haney
“Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character.” Albert Einstein
“True religion is real living; living with all one’s soul, with all one’s goodness and righteousness.” Albert Einstein