We all desire to make a difference every day, but what means to each of us is different. Recently, I’ve found that it is easier to have a significant impact that makes a difference when I have a clear plan and willingness to stick to it.
When we focus daily on what matters in the long term, we have a most significant impact. Focusing on purpose and meaning will be the best way to make a difference; when we are confident that what we are doing matters, we increase our efforts and have better results.
I’ve spent a lot of time trying to make a difference, but often my efforts were without results. Now that I’ve gotten clear about my goal and I’ve sorted out how to accomplish it, things have improved drastically.
Keep reading, as I will share how I’ve learnt to make a difference every day by sticking to a goal.
To make a difference, you need to focus on what only you can do.
There is a long list of things you can do to make a difference each day; you could smile more often, donate some items, or volunteer some of your time. While all of these things will make a difference to the people you directly help, you can’t expect a significant result unless you are dedicated to it.
Don’t get me wrong, smiling at somebody could make their day if everything else is going wrong for them. Alternatively, volunteering your time at any place will help them get extra work done. And while these efforts will have an impact, how significant that impact is will be difficult to tell.
But more importantly, if they don’t have your focused attention, what can you expect?
Again, volunteering once a week to do something is pretty huge cause I know that most people don’t do anything at all. So if that is the case, then you are certainly making a difference. And this might be where we can draw the line; weekly or regular dedication to anything will lead to a significant impact in time.
With anything in life, we see the most notable impact when we focus and dedicate ourselves. So while there are lots of things that we can do every day that will have an impact, that impact will remain small. On the other hand, when we focus on something, we get better as it has our attention, and we are more inclined to make considerable strides.
And this is where meaning comes into play because the most important difference we can make comes from following our purpose. For many of us, we have a deep-seated need to do something meaningful and make a difference. However, for most people, it seems that they ignore these feelings and instead focus on the here and now.
The thing about our focus or purpose in life is that it is something that only we can do. For some people that might be volunteering at a homeless shelter, for someone else that might be coaching a kids sports team, and for others, that might be developing some art.
The key here is that there is something unique for all of us that only we can do. And by pursuing that consistently, we will have a more significant impact and make more of a difference.
Small everyday actions can lead to huge differences.
We can do many things each day that will have a small impact, and there is no reason to stop doing those things because they matter. Smiling, donating money or time, creating less waste, teaching and helping other people are all good things that are deserving of recognition and appreciation. You could even make the argument that prolonged behaviour like this will have a notable impact.
But the reality is, if we want to have a significant impact, then we need to do something big.
For something to be big, it doesn’t need to get a lot of attention, though that might help; instead, for something to be big, it requires long-term dedication and commitment. I can make cookies once a week, but if I want to be a pastry chef, I will need to take a course or do an internship.
I have a friend who decided to learn a language for fun, and so he picked Japanese. If you have ever tried to learn a language, you understand what it takes, but that effort is amplified by choosing a language as complex as Japanese. That said, learning a language isn’t a simple task, and it isn’t going to happen overnight or ever if you don’t put in a concerted effort.
So to make this a reality, he does a little bit of practice every day, and while the results aren’t significant, he is making tremendous progress over the weeks and months. And while most people might not be doing something like learning a language, it is an excellent example of the compounding effects of continued effort.
While there are lots of small actions or efforts that we can take each day, we are more likely to make a difference if our efforts are targeted towards a goal.
At the same time, there could be some debate about what is a worthy goal and what constitutes a meaningful or purpose-driven effort. But remember, we are making a difference as long as we are working towards something.
Everyone is different, so everyone has different priorities, but for me, I must constantly working towards something. Life can be busy, and our attention can be pulled in multiple directions, but as long as we feel like we are making progress towards a goal, we will have a sense of progression and satisfaction.
Start making a difference today and every day.
I’m a live and let live person; what I mean by that is that as long as someone isn’t hurting me or others, I’m ok to leave them alone. Now you could argue that this policy could lead to chaos as everyone will be headed in a different direction. But I’d say that we are inclined to work together as much as possible, as that is human nature.
But from this perspective, it isn’t up to me to tell other people what they should do with their lives; that is on them. This doesn’t mean that I think you should sit on the couch, get high and play video games, but if you want to, that is on you.
Instead, I’d hope that most people would aspire to do something meaningful. I’d hope that people sincerely want to make a difference and make the world a better place.
To do that, however, we need to figure out what we need to do. For me these days, my goals are to get healthy and build my online business. A friend is dedicating himself to learning a new language. Another friend is trying his luck as a trader, and while that has a lot of risks, he is a master researcher and is serious about doing it right. Yet another friend is intensely interested in diet and mental health, so he is trying to build a business around that.
While my friends and I might be a little overly ambitious, I’m proud to be associated with people who have significant goals that they are working towards.
It shows they are dedicated to making a difference and are doing something about it every day.
To some extent, they are selfishly motivated, but that isn’t necessarily a problem because that is what it takes to be serious about something.
If you don’t already have a goal or target that you are working towards, today would be the best day to get started. As the saying goes, “the best time to start was yesterday. The next best time is now.” If we wait for the perfect time, it will never come, and at the same time, the only way to get better at anything is by starting. So figure out what you are supposed to do and get started.
The best time to start was yesterday. The next best time is now.Unknown
Once you have committed yourself to something, it is easy to keep at it because you’ve already made some progress. You might not change the world, but you will be closer tomorrow and every day after that if you start today. Start by picking a goal, and commit yourself to it, even if that means adjusting your plan down the line.
You can make a difference, but you need to believe it is possible.
We often hear of so-called overnight successes, but the reality is that any success takes time. If you expect to see results right away, you will give up before accomplishing anything of consequence. So it will help if you believe that it is possible to change and make a difference.
We recently moved into a new house; last night, I looked at my phone and found a list of goals for a home that I made last year. As I went through the list, I was amazed at how close the results were to the aims that I had set. It wasn’t 100%, but it was close, and that was moving and inspiring. Seeing that goals can be accomplished, even big ones is incredibly motivating.
But even after seeing that, I still have doubts about other goals I’m trying to achieve.
Even when we see results, we are still going to have our doubts, so we have to have faith and believe in the possibility of accomplishing what we are working towards.
Put another way, we can make a difference, and even if we don’t see results right away, we need to be willing to keep working towards them.
If you want to make a difference, commit to something big and work towards it every day because that is the best way to change the world.