Influence can be a good or bad trait. We’ve seen influence affect entire nations on our planet. We’ve also seen the influence affect nations in such a positive way that lives were changed forever, and the dynamic of health and fitness were forever changed. Good morning! I’m Jimmy Williams with Live a Life by Design, your host today of helping you get a bigger, better, and bolder you out of your week.
Too often, you know we start our week with the negatives, and the news and you know, I’m one of those guys, I just don’t like to fill my mind with anything that’s not powerfully positive so that I can have the best day possible. And extend that to my great week that I wish to experience.
You know one of those things that I wish to talk about today is our second part of our four part series on realizing greatness within you. (Re-listen to Part One) And this part two is going to be about influence. You’re gonna laugh, I know many of you may think that I don’t influence anyone, but I’ve got news for you. Your actions are influencing others around you whether you intentionally wish for it to influence them or not. As a matter of fact, last week remember we discussed intentionality. That you must, with intention, seek out to be great. With intention seek out to accomplish your goals. With intention to change your life for the pure, the positive, and the powerful.
Influence and Realizing Your Potential
Well today we’re gonna talk about the second step necessary in life. The second ingredient for greatness within you and realizing your potential. And that is influence. You know, I will tell you that last week with intentionality I had several comments of people that said they never stopped to think about intentionality in their week. You see we get into routines, we get into habits. Matter of fact our environment may even control our function of life. And what do I mean by that? For example, how many of you this morning, when you arose, went through the same routine to get ready for the start to your day as you did yesterday? And how many of us, especially those of you that might have worn pants today, for example, how many of you thought about which foot you would place first in the pants? Or which shoe you would put on which foot first?
Too often we lack intentionality because we are in the subconscious zone. We are doing something because we did the same thing yesterday, the day before, the week before. You understand it’s every day’s programed into our mind, the same way. I’m asking you to stop the wheel of turning round and round and being in the same spot. You know the lack of progress in our life is not necessarily because we lacked intentionality. The lack of progress in our life is because we didn’t realize we were on the subconscious trail. For example, what I’m getting at, have you ever had a hamster at home when you were a kid, or you may still have one today. I was setting there watching our hamster, and don’t laugh, his nickname was Hammy, not much creativity when you’re a young kid. But I was watching this hamster as he would climb through the different tunnels, and he would take wood chips up and build a little nest somewhere to lay down, somewhere in the corner of this cage of multiple levels and then he had this wheel that he would get on from time to time that was basically seated next to his water bottle.
As Hammy would get on the wheel, I noticed that man he would just take off and I mean run break neck speed go. And as I was watching him, I noticed how fast his little feet were running, just a frenetic pace man, and I mean he was going and going and going and going and for a young man, a child if you will, it seemed like it had been minutes, but I’m sure it was less than a minute. Hammy would quickly jump off of the spinning wheel and get him a drink of water and sit down for just a moment, and then after a few minutes of rest, he once again got back on the wheel and started running.
Do a lot of us feel like hamsters on the wheel during our week? Do we lack intentionality to get things done as we should? Well today I’m gonna talk to you about how to break that with influence in your life. I want you to first be a participant of someone else’s influence in your mind, but then at the end of this discussion today you will be an influencer. Not someone that simply receives influence and absorbs and utilizes it, but you will be someone that gives influence to others. Whether you intentionally think you will or not. It is so important to understand that influence is a powerful tool. A lot of times we see people use influence for negative means.
In the 30s and late 20s of the twentieth century, so 1928-29 in that era. The entire country of Germany was negatively impacted before they knew it by the influence of one man and one political party. Now I don’t live in the past, but I certainly want to learn from the mistakes made by those before me. And in this one man, he was speaking the words of which everyone wanted to hear. At a time when Germany may not have felt as it’s citizens often quoted as if they were respected in the world. Germany felt as though after WWI it had gotten the lesser of the two good deals offered and it was paying the bills of everyone else.
At the end of the day, though, the most important thing that came about from this process of influence was the lack of recognition that the influence was having an impact on them, albeit a negative one, a terrifically negative one, until it was too late. You see influence can also be a very positive trait. Let’s take just a few minutes about that influence. On April the 19th 1995, in the state of Oklahoma at that time the largest terrorist bombing on our own soil occurred in our home state of Oklahoma in the capital of Oklahoma City. A young man that had been influenced negatively toward his own government decided that he would make a stand against his own government by doing the unthinkable. By colluding with others he gathered the necessary tools, ingredients and transportation to go establish a bomb that would forever change the lives of many.
You see he then parked this truck, with the loaded bomb inside, slowly ticking away until its timer was about to the end, and then blew away half of the Murrah Building. This devastating tragedy though, Jimmy, why would that be a positive influence? Well, here’s where the influence of positivity came into play. The great people of the state of Oklahoma, pulled together as they often do when there is a tragedy in their midst. Whether it’s the horrific scene of tornados that totally eviscerate the entire city, leaving only a few trees standing and they pull together resources, manpower and others from outside the state that come and see this wonderful contribution of each neighbor we have to help the other, that they start influencing those around us. Before you realize it, you have yourself, in the midst of one of the most influenced positive movements of support and love for mankind that you could have ever dreamed.
You see the positive influence is what we’re talking about today. You know, we need to be a positive influence to others and here is how you can be a positive influence. First and foremost, live a life that others desire to emulate. Now I’m not saying that you should emulate me, and have my lifestyle. I’m merely offering opportunities, I’m offering ideas, I’m trying to offer that positive point of powerful news so that you can take it and apply it as you wish in your own life to achieve the goals you have for you. You see this is such a unique world we live, I am only me, I can only do me better than anyone else can do me. I can play the role of Jimmy far better than anyone else. As a matter of fact I believe I could win an Academy Award for me acting as Jimmy on any stage in the planet.
My point I’m making is live that life that others wish to emulate. In other words I will tell you a story of my junior high school days. In junior high there was a young man named Wade, I won’t use his full name because I haven’t had permission from him to do so, but Wade to me was the perfect athlete student personified when I was in school. I looked up to Wade, although he didn’t know this, I looked up to Wade, because A, he was an athlete personified as I said. He was a basketball player, baseball player, he did well and accelerated in any sport we had available in our small school. Not only that, Wade was a classy dresser, as I thought back in the 70s, you know the bell bottoms, had the cool suede shoes, had shirts that were plaid, you know he just looked the part of being the guy that I’d like to emulate when I was a young man. You know, at the end of the day though, I found out Wade was not a smoker, so I never attempted to smoke. Something that was very popular in the 70s that most people brought through the 60s with their addictions and carried on through the 70s, I never participated.
I often found out too that Wade was not a drinker, or so I thought. Wade was not a drinker, so I never participated in those bad habits to the degree that ever caused me problems in life. Now for full disclosure, I may have a glass of wine with a meal when I’m out of town, eating a good steak, but the point I’m making is I’ve never let it get to excess to where it control me instead of me controlling it. And then I looked at Wade and he was a 4.0 student, now in this day and age if the younger people are listening to our podcast, and we hope you are, but if you’re listening and you go, well big deal 4.0 is not much of a grade because you know my daughters got 4.3s and 4.4s as they graduated high school, but 4.0 was all they offered at the highest level of grading which was an A in every subject for all four years of high school. And so Wade had grades, had the look, he had the talent on the sports scene. He had the health issue of no smoking, no drinking, and so forth. And he dated a wonderful redhead. Now she was a beautiful young lady, all of us in junior high admired her, she was just a beautiful girl. To us, Wade looked like he had it all. You see he had influence of which he never even asked to discharge the rest of us, to indicate to us that he was trying to be influential. He was very quiet and we thought he had it so together and that he was the coolest guy in town because he influenced us so powerfully to be just like Wade.
Well the thing I’m trying to bring about with that is, look for those in your life, in your sphere of friends, or even that are unknown to you but you now know them through history. One of my greatest powers of influence to me has been one of my mentors Jim Rohn. Jim influenced me in his words, his books, his videos. I only met Jim a couple of times, with a mere handshake with seconds to get my name and maybe a photo. But I never really got to know him deeply on a personal level other than through his products he developed. But he had such and influence on me, that through this day and my career it has carried me forward to new heights of talent, new heights of abilities and he continues to influence me even though he has now been dead for many years. You see also returning good for evil will help you be a positive influence for others.
In this day and age, I don’t have to tell you that we are in a disruptive society. We have one body of people that may dislike another body of people simply because of their nationality. Or their religious beliefs, or whatever reason it may be, they are simply trained as children to dislike us. To dislike another group of people because their grandfathers had a battle with them at one time perhaps. You see, we have the ability to train our minds in which way we wish to treat and respect people. To be a positive influence though, you must not return evil for evil, but you must find a way to return good for the bad.
You see we are not born with prejudice and hate in our hearts. Nope, those are items that are taught to us by those around us. So start today in your mind to be a positive influence by not returning evil for evil. If social media continues to be a real problem for you, there’s a simple process of solving this issue. Turn it off. Disconnect. Delete the app. Whatever it takes for it to not erode your mind to the point that you are now training the next generation on this same methodology for evil for evil. Return good for evil, and attract don’t pursue people. On an earlier podcast episode you heard me say success is something you attract, not pursue. It works the same way with this powerful trait of influence. If you want to influence people you’ve got to find a way that you can influence them in a way that attracts them to you.
Just like I was attracted to Wade’s persona, look at how you may be watched by those around you, that you’re not even aware. Too often we don’t even have the idea known to us that someone is watching, perhaps emulating and putting forth the same attitudes, charisma, drives the same car, whatever that you have influenced. And I will tell you I utilize influence many times per day to help our clients, and our team make the best decision they can make for their lives. I’m not telling them what to do, but I am providing positive influence for them to make their core selection of life as to what would be in their best interest. You see that’s the difference between good influence and bad.
See bad influence works very very hard and diligently to bring others underneath their power. Whereas good influence does just the opposite. Good influence reaches out and projects to others the opportunity for them to empower themselves. You know, why is it important to be a positive influence to others, first and foremost by living the life of an influencer you reinforce your own power and growth by enhancing others and instilling power within them. I didn’t say you consolidate that power within you, I said you enhanced your own. You see it’s hard to be an influencer if you continue to pour out your influence, but you yourself are not being influenced.
If I just failed to listen to great podcasts, or read my bible, or if I failed to exercise or I failed to communicate clearly and even taking now coaching lessons on how I should speak and conduct myself, yes I’ve got a coach for just about everything you can imagine in life. Then I would be unable to continue forward what I think is my mission in life and that is to positively influence others so they may again go positively influence someone else. You see for me it’s not just something I want to leave as a legacy, but I would love for people to say, you know I never felt better than when I was in the presence of that Jimmy. He always was kind, he always had a good word to say, and I never once heard him say anything negative about someone else. That’s what I want to live up to. Now I’m not telling you I live up to those today, I may have times of weakness just like you. But we are human. Today’s a new day. Forget about yesterday. Throw in the past what is the past. I tell clients all the time, I can’t change yesterday, but I can certainly form a new tomorrow.
So be an influence to others because the importance it will play in your children’s life, your co-workers, your spouse, anyone you meet in public. Many times what I have found is people pay with reciprocity what they receive. For example, I often will smile at someone that’s waiting on me at a table where I am dining, before they ever get to the table they see me smiling and as I see them coming I broaden my smile even more. When they get to the table, nine times out of ten, unless someone is just having a horrific day, nine times out of ten they will return that smile. And then I know that I’ve got em.
I know that now I’ve got a new friend, potentially, I’m going to have someone that gives me the best service I most likely could have had at this particular restaurant, and I also know that when I leave, because I’m going to leave a pretty big tip, when I do leave, they’re not only going to thank me for the money, but they’re hopefully inside their minds gonna say, wow, that was wonderful and then I hope that they can pass it on to others.
So who do you want to influence in your life? First of all, I want to influence my children. I have two wonderful, talented, beautiful daughters that look just like their mom, thank goodness. I often tell people, I didn’t have a whole lot to do with that, God inspired and Dena delivered is what I say. But our two daughters have personalities that are diametrically opposed to one another. One, a little more agreeable. The other one, a little more independent. Both though, are very positive and talented in the way they approach their sphere of friends and what is going on within their life. I will tell you that I have been so appreciative, not to brag on my kids, but the fact that they listen to dad at the times when I didn’t think they were. Side note for those of you that are parents, your kids may be working on their building blocks, their lincoln logs or whatever while you’re talking with them and you feel like you’re getting no traction whatsoever with what you’re trying to teach. I assure you they are listening intently in most cases.
Our daughters now, ages 18 and 23, bring things up to me that I said years and years and years ago at times when it best serves them. When they’ve got dad in a pickle sometimes, they toss it back to me and put it in my lap. But my point is I want to be an influence on them that is positive, I want to leave a legacy through them that says helping others is the better way of life. That by leaving others better than you found them, is truly the legacy you wish to leave. You see, money and fame, buildings with your name on them, those are all great. I’m proud we have great people to do that, but at the end of the day all of those things will wither away with time. Be forgotten in the memories, but the legacy you live that’s built upon generation of generation of being a positive influence to others will never die.
You know your family as well, gotta be truthful with you, sometimes my grandmother that’s now deceased didn’t have the best attitude, you know I would go to her home and I’d be just bubbling up as a teenager and I was always in a pretty good mood, I never had a bad day I’d say I just had some that were better than others, but I had a great childhood. And I had what I consider to be the most positive of parents, during my childhood I was basically empowered with the idea I could do anything I wanted to put my mind too, as long as I work for it. Well, I’d go to my grandmother’s and I gotta be honest with you, I’d leave there almost in a state of depression, she wouldn’t say for the entire hour or two we were there, for a kid it seemed like all day, but I’m sure it wasn’t that long, she wouldn’t say two words that were very positive, and man I just didn’t like staying in that environment when that happened.
Now there were many great times, don’t get me wrong, but there were times that I wished that I had never been there, and had I been able to control my mode of transportation might have stayed a little bit shorter. I love my grandmothers and my grandfathers, but I will tell you the ones that were more positive that were the ones that attracted me to their side to hear stories that they’d regale of their early childhood about how times were hard but they survived because of their mindset and what brought them through those tough times. I learned a lot about life lessons from these people. They were influencing me in a way that it helped me carry forward and grow in those areas.
You know I also want our team members at work, you know I work with some of the most talented people. These professionals are outstanding at what they do. And they bring with them the greatest of attitudes. You know I like to work with people that have the ability to not only contribute to the positive mood of the office, but actually create it some days. You know I don’t have every day that’s great. I’ve got most days that are exceptional, some that are great, and I will tell you that’s all because I start my day with that positive mindset that today is the greatest day of my life.
While I’m shaving, as I mentioned on a previous episode, I will look in the mirror and say, this is the greatest day of my life. I’m planting those positive seeds to start this day. You know, I want to challenge you this week on influence. I want you to look within yourself to see if you’re being a positive influence on others. You must first be a positive influence with your own mind before you can project or lead others. Influence, remember, is not power, I don’t want to be an influence to people to have power over them, I want to influence people to empower them to lead a better life. And perhaps others do the same.
You know, this is one critical area of realizing greatness within you. Be intentional as we said in episode previous to this, with your influence. Know that people are watching us every step we take during the day, whether we know they are or not. And I will tell you their vision is crystal clear when we’re not at our best. So I encourage you today, take this challenge this week. Be positive in your influence. Realize that you are influencing people when you don’t even know that you are. And do me a big favor, go to our podcast on iTunes. Please subscribe if you haven’t. Rate it and write a review for us. We’re working over the next two weeks to get our reviews to more than 100 reviews. We’d love to be on the new and noteworthy section of iTunes. Also, don’t forget, that if you would, leave us a comment of how you have been positively influenced. Who gave you the positive influence in your younger days or currently influencing you now. There’s a place to do this, underneath the show notes of each episode on livealifeby.design/podcast.
And join us next week as we share the secret weapon to improving your life exponentially in part 3 of this 4-part series. To fully grasp the concepts and place the needed changes in life, you need to listen to this series more than once. You know the more we can ingrain in our lives those positive mental images and phrases, the more quickly you can make changes and the greater your power to grow. You see this has been an opportunity for me to enjoy a few moments with you each Monday on this podcast. I must tell you this is empowering to me to hear the comments that you good listeners are sending us, everyday. Look on with our engineer and found that we are now in 11 countries across the globe. That just empowers me to do even better and bring you the best value each week. So thank you for bringing us into your home, your car, your work, wherever you listen to this podcast, I certainly appreciate it and so does our team.