We live in a time when people have learned techniques and developed skills beyond anything anyone even dreamed possible only a few short decades ago! Tricks you would only see in the circus have become almost commonplace in urban parks. Our media floods us with images of people achieving super-human strength, endurance and daring and challenges us and promises us that we can do the same. 

It’s no wonder that we have a society of angry, frustrated individuals full of entitlement as well as epidemic self-doubt! We tell kids they can be the next Michael Jordan without telling them that first they need time to grow an extra five or six feet while tirelessly training to develop great skills. We tell adults trapped in hopeless mindless jobs that they can be millionaires overnight (if they just give us some of their money) and fill their heads with big dreams and half the ingredients to bake the cake.

The trouble with so many influencer groups is that they flaunt their accomplishments, setting the apparent bar so high that the people who need their help the most may become discouraged before they even try. 

It is not the healthy that need a healer.

You are not a leader if you have merely gathered a herd of like-minded individuals around you.

A true influencer sees our common humanity and desire for a life with less pain and extends their hand to the wretched, suffering and stumbling voices, not to the chorus clad in comfort, praise and glory.

The people who are already on par with you and your accomplishments are great for your validation or ego, but if you are really trying to help others, to give vision to those who are blind, to give strength to the weak, to give direction to the lost, you need to first visit them on their level and take the first steps out of the mud with them, not just point out the direction shouted from a cloud on high.

A baby has to learn to walk and talk, one small step at a time. The parents don’t flaunt their adulthood and skill. They come down to their child and help them take the first small steps and offer encouragement and direction, not challenge and judgement, and certainly not punishment for stumbling. The parent, the influencer, is a beacon. Not a dictator, but a light in the dark.

A lot of influencers measure their accomplishments in dollars more than in the less tangible results of the confidence and self-esteem brought to others. 

Money is a brilliant symbolic means of exchange. It is as powerful and abundant as water. It can carve rock and canyons, grow vast jungles, and destroy a city in minutes. Like water, it can be managed and guided in channels to bring life to arid deserts.

The same is true of knowledge. 

As an influencer, you are “the engineer who can bring water to the desert” and bring the technology that makes undrinkable water drinkable. You are here to show people the myriad possibilities that come with having water. Or you can be a jerk and show how well your yacht floats on your water. No doubt, soon you will be walking on water. Or, you can build an arc, teach others how to build their own arcs, remain humble and actually serve, actually influence in a useful way.

About Anton

Author. Artist. Food & Fitness.

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