Don’t underestimate the power that you have on others.
Your words of encouragement could change the outcome of another’s life. Sharing with another who you see potential in what it is you see in them, may be just what they need to find success they would otherwise never realize.
And, sometimes, simply sharing the words of another, showing them that it’s okay to speak up even if they don’t feel that their words are worthy of your time, can also go a long, long way.
Seth Godin is one of my heroes. He is an amazing and generous sharer of ideas – through, among other things, books, a daily blog that is one of the most popular on the internet, and a podcast. (He’s the reason I started writing daily).
I want to go on about why he is my hero, but let me get to my point here and I have and will continue to share his ideas here from time to time. At the end of each podcast episode, he answers questions that listeners had about the previous episode. To submit a question, listeners must go to the website and record a question. His stories often resonate with me, and I have submitted a question twice. First, at the end of August. He didn’t respond to my question on the podcast – BUT he responded to my question via email! I couldn’t believe he would take the time to interact with me! I was so, so touched…as in I don’t have words besides giddy.
I thought you said you were famous? When do we get to that part?
More recently I submitted a comment related to a story he told. I had an experience similar to something he discussed in his podcast. It was nothing substantive related to the story, just getting stopped for the same traffic infraction in the same location. I felt a bit silly sending him my story. Usually he responds to deep questions on the podcast, and this was most definitely not deep and not even a question. But what happened? He actually played my comment at the end of the podcast and then responded with a more in depth story of his own. [You can hear this interaction if you play this episode, Who is Banksy, starting about 7:30 minutes from the end].
I am trying to dissect why this makes me so ridiculously excited. Is it fame because thousands of people will hear my voice, even though they won’t even know it is me??? Maybe a little, however, I think it boils down to being seen by someone I admire and trust. He is surely bombarded by questions and requests for his time, and yet he took time to interact with me personally.
I’m struck that we may not realize that we have such a deep effect on one another through our words and interactions. Even if we do not have the notoriety of Seth Godin, there are still people who look up to us who will be affected by the attention we give to them.