Don’t make an impact
We define impact as making an impression on someone. But why do you have to? A question I regularly ask myself. What’s the actual purpose and how do you know if you managed to manifest the change or response you wanted? The need to make an impact has the consequence of turning one into an impostor, an exaggerated, extreme version of yourself that’s false. It’s a variant of yourself that sells an idea, a belief. In actuality, you are bound to revert the moment comfort sets. Sustaining a character to push a cause or change is not an act that someone can actively maintain for a length of time.
It’s a selfish necessity that we use to fuel our ego.
There are moments where I thought it was necessary to make an impact. To make a grand gesture, show my knowledge at a workshop, to be recognised or impress someone though I find myself in a peculiar position, it’s as if my brain switches on autopilot and I’m just a passenger. Call it a brain blackout. Not hearing what I am saying, but hoping the impact is positive. I’ve come to realise, by trying to be something that isn’t fundamentally me, I am doing myself a disservice, and so are you.
Knowing who you are is more important than making an impact. How do you do know yourself, you might ask. First, it’s essential to understand that you don’t. Adopting a position of radical humility, watching yourself like a snake watches its prey, is paramount. By deeply observing your emotions and actions, you begin to understand the ignorance of yourself. Your arrogant ego is blinding. You’re too proud of who you think you are when in fact you don’t know yourself. It is in the silence of a conversation that you can create a sense of presence.
Who are we?
Language is the foundation of our humanity. The subtlety that allows you to convey an opinion or concept across in a simplified manner without losing its essence. Not the grand gestures that we think we need to use to make a point. In most scenarios, words are just complicated airflow that disguises what we want. Get to the point, don’t beat around the bush, saying things without actually speaking them. It’s a waste of time and effort. Communication is a two-way street, about what is said, the flipside being, what is understood. Actively listening to truly grasp what an individual is describing combined with an attentiveness to non-verbal cues is a concoction, when used correctly will aid your ability to communicate significantly.
Words are just complicated airflow
The director David Fincher famously gave the advice that behaviour is the most crucial thing in every piece of material that you read, and perform directly. This advice holds in reality. Understanding people’s behaviour is the foundation blocks of social interaction gives you the ability to perform a root cause analysis of the situation. No one can truly understand another person’s point of view as communication is inherently flawed; it’s limited by perspective.
Empathy gets us as close as possible to the unattainable outlook.
Ultimately we always have an impact on people. The fact that someone has remembered your name is evident of that, but it’s not about other people. It’s about self. You. To invest, improve yourself results in improving your impact, each goes hand in hand. Compare yourself today to the self of yesterday, not someone else, by setting yourself small incremental improvement goals. 1% growth is the aim, to continuously advance each day is an achievement.
Focus on yourself, that will do all the talking.