Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Be a light, not a judge, be a model, not a critic. Little by little your circle of influence will explode and you will avoid the emotional metastasizing cancers of complaining, criticizing, competing, comparing and cynicism, all which reflect victimization, all of which are the opposite of being proactive. Stephen Covey

Why is it that we think we are so powerful we won’t change our seating when our team is in the playoffs? What if we jinx them? Why don’t we feel so powerful in other areas of our life? What if we put that kind of belief and focus into areas of our life where we want to excel, where we want to manifest abundance, health, prosperity?

Some of us feel we have built the lives we have, some of us feel circumstances we can’t overcome have given us the life we have. Who is right? Probably both, we can’t overcome all of our circumstances and we aren’t bound by all our circumstances. We have a degree of self-determination, and life can seem to work for us or against us.

We see people who succeed against all odds, and we also see people who fail against all odds. There are things at work in our life we don’t understand. It is why we shouldn’t be too full of hubris when we succeed, and we shouldn’t be too down on ourselves when we fail.

We see people who ride the crest of waves and prosper while those who were too early or too late don’t get such gains. Timing is a good part of life, and that seems like luck. If we are at the right place at the right time, with the right idea and the right amount of resources, acumen, skills, etc. we look brilliant.

Some people start something and in a few years, they are head of multimillion dollar companies. Others are owners of a small Mom & Pop operation, still, others have closed shop.

Wherever you are, that’s your stage, your circle of influence. That’s your talk show, that’s where your power lies… You have the power to change somebody’s life. Everyone has a calling, and your real job in life is to figure out what that is and get about the business of doing it. Oprah Winfrey

At my writing group Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James came up, no one thinks it is written particularly well. But, one person says the author is a multi-millionaire because she got the masses to buy her book. She offered them something they wanted. and brilliant writing wasn’t necessarily part of it. I’ve read the series, I enjoyed them. Do you think the author knew where her writing would take her, I don’t. Fifty Shades of Grey started out as stories on Fanfiction.net.

When she self-published her novel she had 30,000 copies sold in e-book downloads in one year. This is when literary agents started to take notice. Had she not self-published and built up a readership would literary agents and publishers be beating down her door? I doubt it, once she had done the work of proving she had an audience, they were happy to help her reach a larger audience.

I’m reading supporters of fan fiction have mixed feelings about E.L. James and her overwhelming success. Some feel that fan fiction is not supposed to be profitable and that E.L. James betrayed the community and its values by signing a book deal with such a major publisher. We can’t set out to become the kind of success E.L. James became; we can put our work out into the world. There are things we can do to promote it, we might even fear it could become a big success, but we can’t control where it goes once it is put out into the world.

Where will our journeys take us? We start something, we set something in motion, and it takes on a life of its own, or it does not. Our ideas may resonate with many, or few. We may become an influential voice, or not. We may not make much money, or we may make a lot of money but be considered fluff. Some people are nobodies in their own time, but legends after their death.

A lot of life we can’t control, we need to be okay with that. If we do the thing we feel called to do, then we’ve done our part. We don’t know how our life will touch someone else’s? How, who we encourage, motivate, raise, or teach, will impact the world. If we do the best we can to impact people positively, our ripple will spread out into the world.

We each have a circle of influence, when we work within that circle of influence we have an impact. Our circle of influence can grow. Do too many of us waste our energy worrying about what is beyond our circle of influence?

There is so much we can do to render service, to make a difference in the world – no matter how large or small our circle of influence. Stephen Covey

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, laughter, and love.

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