One could argue that an individual’s highest aspiration would be to make a difference, to matter. To know that he/she has lived, and made this world a better place. That they weren’t just another tiny spark in the grand scheme of things.
But, how do we make that aspiration a reality?
How can an ordinary individual make a contribution to his social circle, let alone the world?
It starts with our conception of contribution, that is, what it actually takes to make a difference.
Do we need to be wealthy and contribute large sums of money in order to make a difference?
Do we need to end world hunger? Fight terrorism? Bring about world peace?
Well, all those things are worthy causes, however, they are not the only way, as an individual , to make a difference.
You can make a difference in two distinct ways:
1. The creative expression of who you are:
Being an authentic individual in the world. Meaning – by expressing your true identity in the world, fighting to get your voice heard, being true to yourself and acting in congruence with your highest aspirations, you can make a tremendous contribution. Just by being who you are, expressing yourself fully and being congruent, you inspire others to also be their true selves. You inspire others to make the most out of themselves, to be congruent, to be true – you make people more complete human beings,
simply by being yourself.
2. “Classic” contribution:
That is – volunteering, giving money to charity, starting a non-profit, getting involved in a worthy cause.. etc.
That is contribution as you may know it. However, the emphasis needs to be on things that you care about.
Contributing shouldn’t be a chore, it’s definitely an important thing to be doing, but it would be much less beneficial if you would come to it with negative “I don’t really want to be here” vibes.
So, you must find something that you truly love doing – even if it doesn’t seem to contribute as much.
What do I mean by that?
Well, world hunger might be the most pressing problem at the moment, but if you don’t see yourself volunteering in Africa, it doesn’t mean you should drop the whole concept of volunteering and contributing altogether. It just means you have to find the thing that you find meaningful and exciting.
Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good. When contributing, every little act counts. So, if you want to consistently contribute and make a difference, find something that you love, even if it seems “less important”.
And so, my friends, contribution is a very important part of designing a worthy meaning to our lives, and making a difference.
But when you put things in perspective, you find that even by just being your true authentic self, and expressing yourself creatively in the world, you make a tremendous difference in the lives of those around you.
So, don’t let perfect be the enemy of good.
Make a difference in your unique way.