Many people believe that they don’t have what it takes to make a difference in the world. They believe only people like Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Theresa, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, and the like, are capable of making a positive impact.
The truth is, every one of us can contribute and make a difference in our own unique way. It need not be anything out of the world. It just needs to be something you do with the intention of ‘doing good’.
The following are eight ideas for how anyone can make a difference in the world:
1. It Need Not Be an Enormous Task
If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.
– Mother Teresa
You already have what it takes to make the world a better place. Making a difference to the world may seem like an enormous task, but it is in fact the collective effort of everyone to make small contributions with a lot of heart.
The size of the contribution is not what matters most. The key here is to have the heart to do it.
2. Start Now
How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.
– Anne Frank
There is no one best time to start to make a difference in the world. You don’t need to wait until you have the time to share some love; you don’t have to wait till you make more money to share a slice of bread. Little efforts count, and you can start making small contributions today.
3. Your Contribution is Never Too Small
Nobody can do everything, but everyone can do something.
– Author Unknown
If you think that everything has been taken care of by somebody and your contribution is not going to make much of a difference, then you’re wrong. Can you imagine if everyone else starts to think the same way?
In fact, it is our responsibility to seek ways to contribute, large and small. You don’t have to be concerned you’re only capable of making small contributions. What counts is the effort.
4. The Greatest Gifts of All
Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.
Happiness and love are the two greatest gifts you can give to the world. Too often, we’re so indulged in our own gratifications that we forget there are people in this world whom we can make a little happier and feel more loved.
As the saying goes, “To receive, you must first give”. The more you give, the more you’ll receive. Let us remind ourselves that in order to receive more happiness and love, let’s spread more of them first.
5. Empower Other People
Abilities wither under criticism; they blossom under encouragement.
– Dale Carnegie
You can change the world by helping one person at a time. One of the ways to help someone is to empower the person. But how do you empower a person? Well, one of the ways is to be generous in giving praise and encouragement instead of criticism.
By praising and encouraging the person, you’d have helped him/her to accomplish what he/she is meant to be, and that would lead to more value being added to the world.
6. Seek to Make a Long-Lasting Effect
The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches but to reveal to him his own.
– Benjamin Disraeli
This is Mr. Disraeli’s version of “Give a man a fish; you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.”
The good that we seek to do will make more of a difference when there’s a long-lasting effect rather than a temporary effect. For example, if we make contributions to build a school, it will benefit many people for years to come.
And when more people receive education, they will in turn provide more value to the world.
7. Stop Whining and Do Something
If you have time to whine and complain about something then you have the time to do something about it.
– Anthony J. D’Angelo
All the whining and complaining in the world is not going to make a difference to the world. It will only drain you of your precious energy from doing things that do make a difference.
Instead of whining and complaining, seek to use the time more productively by engaging in activities that matter. When it comes to making a difference, nothing matters more than taking action.
8. Lead the Way
A good example has twice the value of good advice.
– Albert Schweitzer
Other than doing things to make a difference, we should also seek to influence others to start doing things that make a difference. And the best way to convince other people is to lead by example.
Start doing whatever is within your ability today. Start showing more concern and love to the people around you. Start to make monthly donations to your favorite charity. Start putting more effort into your work to increase the value output.
Every effort counts, no matter how small and insignificant it may seem. Just do something, and do something good.
Do you have other suggestions on how we can make a difference in the world? Please share them in the comment section below.