Friday, July 30, 2010

The Power of One

Picture for one moment, sitting in a stadium with 100,000 people. There’s a black-out and the entire city is thrust into complete darkness. Everyone in the stadium has a candle but no light, except for one person. One person has a lit candle. Everyone else is sitting in the dark. He or she can withhold the light. He or she might do this because they are afraid of losing their light. Or through an act of giving they can choose to share the light by lighting other candles and as other people share the light they receive, the stadium begins to light up and before you know it everyone’s candle is lit.

Everyone can see and the light from the original candle has not been diminished in any way.

In fact the person who gave the original light is now benefiting hundreds fold or even thousands fold because they can see so much better and so much further and all they gave was their original light.

This demonstrates the power one individual can have on our world. This demonstrates the law of giving. Religions often talk about the law of tithing, and even the Bible points out that the return from tithing, of giving 10%, is at least ten-fold, and even greater.

Giving comes in many different forms. Giving of your time, sharing a smile, making someone feel good about themselves, giving guidance to help someone accomplish something, giving a listening ear to a person with a problem, giving time and effort on a project that will be good for the team and the company, giving expertise or time or effort to make a difference, giving of your time and effort to change something that needs changing in your company and how people perceive it because it is the right thing to do. Giving comes in so many different ways.

Whenever you give, you feel good. But it is the hardest ‘giving’ that gives you the greatest rewards. When it is the hardest because maybe you don’t have the time, or don’t have the heart or don’t have the money, or whatever it is that makes giving truly difficult, that is the giving that will give you the greatest rewards, the greatest personal growth and provide the greatest benefit.

If everyone did one act of giving today, think of how many people you would touch and think of how they might respond to other people and make their day a little brighter. As with the candle, giving does not diminish your light. In fact it makes it brighter.

I think it is an old Chinese proverb that says if every person went outside and cleaned the front of their house everyday and the street in front of their house every day, we would live in a completely pristine world and all of this would be accomplished by one little unselfish act at a time. Collectively the power of one would have the capacity to transform our world.

I hope you go out and do one act of giving today. The Power of One can accomplish so much when the power is focused on making a contribution without any strings attached or any need for recognition, just an act of unselfish giving to make a difference.

This month’s video is a short conversation with Dr. Michael Beckwith on what we can do, in fact how, even in a small way; we can contribute to our world. Enjoy.

Have a great, fulfilling, giving and miraculous day.