How to Change the World

Creating a global ripple of impact from everyday acts of goodness.

Posted Jun 13, 2019

Kathrine Savu
Original artwork by Kathrine Savu
Source: Kathrine Savu

One of my pet peeves is when people say, "I guess there are still good people in the world." As though it's as rare as hen's teeth when someone turns in a wallet to the lost-and-found or helps a duckling cross a busy road. 

To the contrary, kindnesses like that occur all around us, all the time, and good people are everywhere. It's our choice whether or not to focus the lens of our worldview onto the positive or negative.

This takes practice. I, for one, don't show up to a traffic jam with bells on my toes. I regularly need to consciously adjust the focus of that pessimistic lens. And when I'm willing to make that shift, I see it everywhere! People making these small gestures of goodness that create big impacts. The streets and grocery store aisles are thick with people holding doors, helping ducklings, letting me into their lane, smiling at strangers. They aren't even getting paid to behave this way! And I know for a fact that their little gestures are having a big impact because, when I see them, they change my day and remind me that changing the world starts with me.

Too saccharine? Perhaps a bit syrupy, but don't we need to be constantly reminded of the positive power we hold? To be reminded of our responsibility to change the world? Personally, I sometimes need a little something to grab me by the nape of my neck and pull me out of the negativity spiral. Something like this...

When you consume something, create something.

When you buy something, donate something.

When you find a dollar, give a dollar.

When you need a dollar, ask for help.

When you ask for help, offer help.

When you receive a kindness, pass it on.

When you see a smile, pass it on.

When you encounter a problem, take it on.

When you see an injustice, call it out.

When you're curious, seek knowledge.

When you have knowledge, share it.

When you have a positive thought, share it.

When you have a negative thought, keep it.

When its none of your business, don't do business.

When it is your business, conduct with compassion.

When you've given your best, make time for rest.

Then do it all over again tomorrow.

And if ever you feel you don't matter, simply tell someone else that they matter. You've just mattered and you've just changed the world.