A Longing to Make a Difference

September 6, 2013 by  
Filed under current, Serenity Space, The Space

you make a difference

I have always longed to make a difference. To somehow be a person who by shining my light gives another permission to shine theirs. And yet, this has been my greatest challenge.

In longing to make this difference I have created a wall of expectations for myself. Expectations that I then try, mightily, to live up to. And when I fail, because I often do, my mind tells me the story of not-enoughness, of what’s the use-ness, and dares me to give it up.

Until something, or someone, comes along and reminds me that in the smallest of ways I have made a difference to them. Even in my defeat and exploded expectations.

And I wonder, do you need a reminder that you, too, make a difference?

It wasn’t until I redefined what making a difference means, that I finally let it in.

Making a difference starts right here, where we’re at.

Making a difference isn’t about solving world hunger, or creating world peace – although that would be nice. Making a difference doesn’t happen in far off lands, nor does it take a million dollars. There is no need to wait until {the house is paid off/ the kids are grown/ you’ve lost 3 kilos/ you’ve finished the degree/ Mr Right appears/ the website is up and your business cards are printed/ add your own …} to start making a difference.

Making a difference is about the small, often insignificant things that we do, day in day out, in our own little corner of the world.

Making a difference starts with knowing that you do. Simply by being you.

It’s the smile on a gloomy day, the hello to a stranger, it’s looking the shopkeeper in the eye and asking how their day has been.

It’s in the hug, and the welcome, and the listening ear. It’s in the tongue that bites back that retort, and the patience you show to others.

It’s in the changes you are making in your life, an unwitting role model for so many.

It’s in the persistence you show in your pursuit of that worthwhile goal, and in the courage you demonstrate every time you step out your door. It’s in the quiet, restoring moments where you fuel yourself, and that elegance you exude as you deal with chaos.

It’s in the gracious way you say thank you for the smallest things, as if it were a great deed done for you.

And it’s in your ability to find a silver lining in every cloud and scatter grace wherever you go.

Every day we show up for life, you and I, we make a difference.


Throughout September, we’re talking about Making a Difference here at The Calm Space. Will you join us?




7 Responses to “A Longing to Make a Difference”
  1. Joanna Paterson says:

    I totally recognise this pattern of thinking!

    It doesn’t lend itself to online branding but I totally agree that it is *how* you do things, in particular your interactions with other human beings, that makes the difference. And often we don’t even realise what these are.

    Thanks for the reminder. And hello!

    • Hello hello Jo my friend! How gorgeous to see your smiling face here.

      You know, branding didn’t even enter my head (oh my, what a black hole that can be), but I get what you’re saying. It really is the personal touch that does it, isn’t it?

      You’ve made a difference in my life. Thanks for being you! xxx

  2. Lovely, Káren! I so wanted to send you an article about “making a difference” for The Calm Space this month, but didn’t get my act together in time – but if I had, then I would have wanted to write exactly what you’ve said here. x

    • Julia hon – thank you, and it’s not too late! I still have some spots open for Making a Difference. I’d love love to hear from you, and I’m sure our readers would also. xx

  3. bonitarose says:

    I loved this article… and I try every day.. to make a difference.. I really do.. I know I was meant to inspire others with my life and this is something I strive for every day.. the only thing that is difficult thing for me, is when no one tells me I am… sometimes I doubt myself… thank you for this.. xo

    • Hello beautiful, such a lovely surprise to see you here! It is hard when we start to doubt ourselves, isn’t it? What if you relaxed into the knowledge that just by being you, you made a difference. How would that feel?

      Psst – let me know if you’d like to share again here. We’d love to have you! xx