The word "influencer" is thrown around a lot lately, and it kind of gets a bad rap.
When I hear the word "influencer" I think of a perfectly done up, attractive person, taking a selfie while drinking the latest coffee drink ending in "ino" in front of a wall with wings painted on it (generally in LA).
The SECOND dictionary definition for influencer is: "a person with the ability to influence potential buyers of a product or service by promoting or recommending the items on social media."
However, the FIRST definition of influencer is: "a person or thing that influences another."
Yup, way back at the dawn of time, before social media, actually before media...people were influencing others. How do you think Eve got Adam to take a bite out of that damn apple? Clearly, he wasn't doing Keto...but I digress.
We are ALL influencers.
Every second of every day that we are around others we, knowingly or not, impact their mood and behavior.
Even strangers. Especially strangers. That impact has a ripple effect on how they affect others.
Hold the door open for someone, smile at a stranger (ok, hold that one until post pandemic if you want them to see it), give a compliment. Your influence will likely be positive and spread.
Conversely, act in less than stellar fashion, that's contagious too.
Even the mere essence of your energy has the power to make a difference.
There have been times when I was standing in line at the supermarket and I could FEEL the negative energy oozing from the person behind me, before they said or did anything overtly, from six feet away!
Ever have a bad interaction with a stranger and it ruins your whole day? Well, we don't often stop to think about it, but we take THEIR negativity, internalize it, and spread it to others.
I used to refer to that as "energy hijacking". That was before I realized I was a willing participant, and basically handed over the keys to my mood.
Yes, someone acts like a jerk, you're going to have an immediate response, we're human beings after all. The key is to respond, not to react. Let them do their negativity thing, you can notice it, you can even briefly let it touch you, but much like a vampire, don't you dare invite it in.
Their actions have everything to do with them, and little, if anything, to do with you. Once you fully get that, you realize that their behavior is their problem, unless you choose to make it yours.
In a time when many seem to forget that others are human beings with feelings, fears and problems of their own, we are quick to lash out on social media, giving little regard to the fact that what takes seconds to write can reverberate for a much longer period.
We are more powerful than we recognize.
It's hard to change someone's mind, it's easy to change someone's mood.
That's a big responsibility, and a big honor. Choose your actions and energy wisely.