No matter what day it is… you are creating and cultivating influence. The level of influence is contingent upon three things.

  1. What you think
  2. What you say
  3. What you do

Each of these elements are present continually in ourselves and how we walk through our days. The blessing and sometimes the curse of influence is that regardless of the what; what you do creates lasting effects. Before we break down the ripple effect, let’s take a quick look at those three contingencies and how they set up our influence.  

What we think is the beginning of influence. Our thoughts are what guide our words and actions. Our thoughts build or break each of those words and actions. Primarily, our thoughts guide how we see ourselves. When we believe in ourselves, those thoughts push our morals, values, and ethics in the direction that strengthens our foundations. When we question ourselves, our thoughts will drive us to think poorly which may result in inappropriate words or actions.

What we say is in direct relation to what we think and is the first interaction we have with others. Whereas thinking creates influence internally that reflect the external, our words then become a direct response externally. It is how others form their beliefs and opinions about us.

Our words become some of the most important actions we take throughout the day. Relationships are built or broken with words.

Trust takes a lifetime to build and moment to lose.

What a powerful quote. We an all think about times where something is said about a person and before we determine the validity of what is said we can change our thoughts. Therefore, it is so important to be a person of utmost ethical influence so that when you speak or act, others know that you are a person of your word.

What we do, or the actions we take are what solidify the words we say, which is how we build our character. Talk can be cheap if it is not followed up by a corresponding action. Actions are how other learn how to trust our words.

Think of thoughts, words, and actions like a sandwich, where thoughts and actions are the bread, and our words are the meat (or PB&J filling). What we say commands the most impact which controls the level of influence we hold.

Whether we think, speak, or act; when we do a ripple is created.

The Ripple Effect

When we influence [ourselves or others] we are throwing the proverbial stone into the pond. It is that simple of a reminder that what we do impacts and influences others.

If I am a frog on a lily pad that is six inches from where the stone is dropped, I am going to feel it more than if I was six feet away. At six feet away I may be able to avoid a ripple (still influence) or its effects with less (or at least different) impact than at six inches.

We cannot control which frogs sit on which lily pads or even the lily pads in the pond, however we can control the stone that creates the ripple.

Each day is an opportunity to create ripples. In fact, I challenge us TO create ripples every day. Time to ask ourselves about the ripples we are creating in the ponds around us.