Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Where to Start

Picture for a moment that you’re typing up a story. You can write anything you choose. You can make it a happy story, a sad one, an inspiring one, or a funny one. The story can be interesting, but it doesn't have to be. It can be full of knowledge, but it doesn't have to be. You don’t have to have nice handwriting. Correct grammar isn't even necessary.  There’s only one rule. You cannot hit ‘backspace.’
What if I told you that story was the story of your life?  That you were composing it right now? Would you be happy with the chapter you’re on?
Now what if I told you that you could change the chapter you’re on for the better? Would you be all ears? See the thing is, I've told a few people recently about my story and their reactions have all been the same (and I quote): “You’re a much better person than me.” The fact of the matter is, they see my goals as really great but can’t possibly see how they could do something just as beautiful. It’s impossible for them to wrap my head around the fact, no matter how much I try to help them understand, that it’s not all that difficult.  It’s not rocket science. They don’t need a master’s degree in “Changing the World.”  Not even an ounce of understanding in the area is necessary.   
So here’s my confession: I have no clue how to change the world. There. I said it. I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m just a teenage girl with a goal and some determination, blundering around and hoping to make a change for the better. I don’t know what I’m doing, but I started anyway, and for some odd reason, it’s working.
So if you’re like me, and don’t know how to change the world, but want to try, I thought I’d give you some hints on where to start. This is where I started at least.
1.       Change the world
a. Go online to your favorite charity and see how you can help out, whether it’s volunteering at a site near your home, raising money for it, or simply spreading the word about their goals. If you don’t have a favorite charity, think about a few causes you’d like to support and find a charity that does. If you can’t find one, make your own.
b. … enough said.
2.       Change your world
a.       Acts of Kindness. I did start out my journey by being kind in general, but this isn't your average be-kind-to-everyone challenge.  This week, my goal is to hit a total of 50 acts of kindness. That’s 7 per day, plus one more for good measure. Maybe I’ll get more, maybe I’ll get less, but the point is, I’m trying. And trying is all you have to do to start changing the world.
So if you want to join in my goal of doing 50 acts of kindness this week, I’d be honored.  Could you imagine a world where everyone goes out of their way to make 50 different people smile each week?  I can. And it’s absolutely beautiful. (Next week, I'll update you guys on how the week went!)
If you’d rather focus your efforts on changing the world in a different way, I fully support that also.  I can’t tell you where to start, but do I need to? Maybe changing the world doesn't begin with an idea. Maybe it just begins with dream.

But regardless, of your decision, you have a book to finish. The story of your life, regardless of your age, has only just begun. Now do you want your story to be filed away in the dusty shelves of an old library basement, or do you want your grandchildren to be reading it in the history books? 

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