Be The Change You Wish To See In The World
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi
This quote, spoken by a man who became an inspiration for human rights movements all over the world, can literally be applied to nearly every area of a person’s life. Whether you are practicing yoga, wanting to alter the politics of a country, or running your own business, the motto of “be the change” rings true. Why? Simply put, if you want to change the world, you have to start by changing yourself.
I have often heard people make excuses for the shortcomings in their life or the world around them with the saying “if it’s meant to be, it will happen.” Oddly enough, these people never seem to be able to move out of the rut that they so often find themselves trapped in. They want to place blame on leaders, higher powers, or the universe at large for all the things that are wrong, instead of looking at themselves.
On the other hand, some people choose the opposite path in life. They embrace the thought process of “if it’s to be, it’s up to me” and take full responsibility for their choices and actions, and the corresponding outcomes that were a result of these. They fully support the notion that they hold the power of their own course in their hands, and then act accordingly. If their destiny is headed in the wrong direction or stuck in a rut, they make a decision to change it.
In any arena of life, gaining the strength to make a change begins with desiring that change. If you want something or wish to see something happen badly enough, you will be willing to do something about it. Those who make the most prominent changes, though, are the individuals who are not afraid to endure personal loss, struggle, or pains for their cause. Those who are so determined to achieve their goals that they refuse to sit idly by, and instead, they take action. These people are often referred to as “movers and shakers” while others simply talk about change.
So how does one “be” the change? First, you have to be aware of what is happening in your own life, as it relates to the world around you. Let’s take a simple example. If you are an entrepreneur that wishes to inspire those who work for you to dream bigger, begin by looking at your own dreams. Are they in line with what you are expecting from others? Are they being communicated to those you wish to influence? Are you willing to work hard and put personal effort into helping others reach the level you desire them to be at? If the answer is no to these questions, then you need to facilitate a change within yourself before pursuing it for others.
In every change that was brought to India…and the world at large…through Gandhi, there was first a change required within the man. If he asked another man to do something, it was an act that Gandhi had first done himself or was willing to do himself. Gandhi wasn’t just a spokesman against injustice, but someone who poured his life, sweat, tears, and blood into being a better human being…in order to be able to lead others down that same path.
While changing the things that are wrong with society and leaving our mark on the world are noble causes, remember that without a change within, it is impossible to make a change without that has lasting effect. Another quote from Gandhi says it perfectly:“As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world – that is the myth of the atomic age – as in being able to remake ourselves.”
[Image via Shutterstock]
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