Written by Jennifer Azubuike
“Khalil! Will you stop running!” Erica scolded. The little boy looked up at his mother and slowed down. He looked around. Wasn’t anything engaging at a doctor’s office? He wondered.
“Khalil!” She shrieked and reached quickly to catch the falling flower vase her son just moved. Luckily she caught it. “If you break anything here, I’ll break your head!” She threatened in quick breaths. It was her usual threat whenever her sons misbehaved.
On hearing the familiar threat, 6-year-old Troy looked up at his mother and then at his little brother. He thought about playing with him so their mom could concentrate on the writing she was doing but no. The game was too interesting to set his iPad down.
The next minute Khalil disappeared and no one noticed. Then came a loud bang and thuds then things breaking. Everyone rushed to see. There stood a terrified but unharmed Khalil beside a tumbled desk with office items strewn all over including some broken glass.
“Oh, Khalil.” The tired mother groaned and hunkered down to her knees beside the catastrophe.
“Bash!” Everyone looked up again. Troy has hit his brother on the head with a metal stapler.
Khalil shrieked. Mommy screamed and rushed for her son.
“What did you do that for?”
“He broke something, so I broke his head.”
* * *
Many people exist without the consciousness of the impact they make in the immediate environment where they live their everyday lives. In a home, for example, the sphere of influence of a mother is mostly on her kids and immediate family, and for a teacher, it is most readily his or her students.
But these are too obvious and are expected. So I wanted to shine some light on the spheres outside of our expected place of influence.
It is most interesting to me that sometimes influences are subtle and even unnoticeable at first. For example, the choice of fashion that a person makes without much thought each day could quietly hold a strong admiration for someone else even if they never say a word about it. In a specific instance, I encountered a young man who chose to smoke cigarettes because an older relative he admires smoked and vowed to only quit when his idol quits. The interesting thing is that this idol only recently learned about this vow.
In addition, points of influence are hardly pre-determined by the influencer. I mean, while we can intentionally impact people using words, anything about you could impress and influence anybody including your voice, manner of speech, self conduct, work ethic, tardiness or punctuality, mannerisms, etc. Yes, people notice things about you every day.
My purpose is to cause awareness and encourage us to wield this tool positively. Adults, please note that younger people could go beyond admiration to pick up on habits they have witnessed. Just as Troy smacked his brother on the head with a piece of metal because he thought it was what his mother would do, he can also become more compassionate, assertive, or enunciate better because someone around him does the same.
So be intentional in everything not out of pressure to impress anyone in particular, but out of the consciousness that you could be leaving a trail of legacy as you go.
Read the previous post here