Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Forty-Two Ways in Forty-Two Days- Ripplemakers

Have you ever tossed a pebble into a pond? It makes a little splash and then a tiny circle that makes a bigger circle and grows bigger until it becomes a wave. Now, if you drop that exact same pebble on ice- the pebble just drops, it doesn't make a single ripple. There are many things in our lives that can cause those ripples, it is just up to us to allow or disallow them.

Making the decision to live a positive life was a big pebble that I dropped into my life. Once I made that choice, I began to count my blessings no matter how small. From there, life started to look a little brighter in general. Next- it seemed to change how I related to people and how they related to me. The wave has been that as I began to look at things more positively- more positive things came into my life. I have tried to become "ice" for negative pebbles and water for the positive. It isn't always easy- but I do my best.

People can be ripplemakers in our lives as well. It can go either way. Have you ever seen a bad mood spread throughout your family or your workplace? Our attitudes and actions are contagious. If you look at the "Pay it Forward" or "Random Acts of Kindness" movements- both started out as a small things and spread until there are people the world over doing something kind for a stranger and not expecting anything in return other than for the recipient to pass it along. We meet potential ripplemakers fairly often, it is just a matter of recognizing it and continuing the ripple. An example of that is the online group of folks living with Rheumatoid Arthritis that I have discovered. One of us will find new information or a blog that we enjoy and we share it. The people that we share it with then pass it along to the people that they know and on and on. That network can really help people. Let's take RA GUY's 60-Second-Guide-To RA as an example. I read it and love it. I printed it out, emailed it and blogged it and shared it with my friends and family as did quite a few others. Not only do they now have a better understanding of what we go through, but they shared it as well. I don't know how many times it has been passed on but I have seen it end up in the hands of someone who was having a really hard time making their spouse and children understand- and that tool made a HUGE difference in their lives. I am quite sure that they will pass it along to others and who knows how many people in their situation will end up with this guide before the wave reaches the shore. All of that understanding and acceptance started with a blog post. That is the power of one small act. Amazing, isn't it?

We all have the potential to be ripplemakers in the lives of people around us- we just have to remember that chose to make our ripple in a positive or negative way. I would like to thank the people who have made positive a ripple in my life. They may not know how much they affected me- but they have made a big impact on me that I hope that I have shared. What kind of ripple will you make today?

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