Teach a Man to Fish
By Carol Carter
Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day.
Teach a man how to fish, and you feed him for life.
I'm a huge fan of the "Pay It Forward" concept. Yes, I have been called a Pollyanna—my results on the Personal Style Indicator back that up—but I don't believe I have my head in the sand. No matter who we are, how we're wired, or what we do for a living, each of us in our own way can effect real change in the world.
How can one person change the world?
You can't change people, but you CAN empower them to improve their own lives, and equip them to reach out and help others.
Just a simple shift in perception and approach can make a huge difference in a relationship, affect an entire team, influence the culture of an organization, make an impact on a community, awaken a nation, and help spread change throughout the world.
You don't believe me?
Throughout the ages, people on purpose did not take the easy road. Dogged and determined, they faithfully pursued what they believed to be important—not just for them, but for humankind.
Can you imagine our world today if . . .
- a group of Quakers in Delaware had kept their slaves to remain more profitable and had not signed a petition against slavery in 1786?
- Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith went back to drinking and never started a word-of-mouth support group for recovering Alcoholics in 1935?
- the Wright Brothers decided flight was impossible, went ahead with other inventions, and never created the three-axis control still used in flying machines today?
- everyone with means during The Great Depression looked after his or her own situation and no one stepped up to create the first soup kitchen?
- Alexander Fleming, like others before him, did not persist with his quest to discover penicillin or spend 12 years seeking a chemist to make a stable form for mass production?
- Mother Teresa opted for a secure, "normal" life for herself?
- Martin Luther prudently put his career first and did not challenge the policies of the Holy Roman Empire?
- you did not choose to help people make positive change in their lives?
The truth is all change starts with one person willing to act on an idea.
Lasting change happens when that action strikes a chord with people who are ready and willing to get involved. Mentoring starts, methods spark to life, word-of-mouth spreads, people are inspired, and the course of history is changed.
Never underestimate the ripple effect of your perceptions and actions. You may not discover a medical cure, start a reformation, invent a new method of transportation, or save countless people from starvation, but you may help change a life that helps change other lives that help change more lives.
Points to Ponder This Month
- What have you learned in life that has changed the way you perceive and treat people?
- How has the way you treat people affected your perception of yourself?
- What 3 things can you can do this month to “Teach a man to fish” or help others help themselves?
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View past CAN newsletters here.)
Have a fully engaged and on purpose month!
Watch for the next CAN on April 22!
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June 4–6, 2009 in
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