As we enter 2017, I think we all can agree we are due for some changes. No matter which way you voted, what policies you stand for, what nationality or religion you support — we are entering a new year with a nation more divided than ever.
The Divided States of America. United we do not stand.
I am consistently finding myself wondering what positive changes can be made. How might my daily actions help a world so sorely in need? And if you, the world, are anything like my Facebook friends, you are wondering the same.
This isn’t a life-changing story or even one with a moral, but it’s something that’s been on my mind lately, begging to be shared.
It goes like this: change the world around you and the world around you changes. Think of it like a pebble in a very still pond. You are the pebble, your waves radiate around you in rings, getting larger and larger as they go. Alone, those ripples might seem insignificant. But multiply by a million, and the water moves. Change happens.
This millennial generation, of which I am a part, is one of the most inspired to date. We have access to endless resources and information, and are passionate about improving the world we live in. We know the taste of forward progress towards equality and justice and recognize that moving backward would be unthinkable.
I will admit, I frequently get overwhelmed by the magnitude of it all. But that’s why I’m embarking on this mission. After all, we each only have power over those around us. Unless you are the next MLK or Mother Teresa (in which case, show yourself please!), your opportunity for impact will be limited to your circle. Make as many ripples on the water as possible. Surround yourself with good people. Challenge the status quo and the prejudices of your loved ones. Kindly explain problems that others may not see. So much of bigotry is, unfortunately, inherent. Shine a light on it and inspire others to do the same. Expand your network beyond those who share your beliefs. Perhaps you too will learn something! The worst thing we can do is to shelter ourselves and do nothing. Don’t let the fear of failure keep you from playing the game.
So let’s get started! Big things start small. They start with us.
This is my resolution for the New Year. And hopefully for all the years that follow.