“If you would only sense how important you are to the lives of those you meet... There is something of yourself that you leave at every meeting with another person.” –Fred Rogers
If you are anything like me then you walk through life constantly giving of yourself, hoping its making a difference for someone but ultimately accepting that there is no way you can have any true or long lasting impact. I say this knowing in my head that people impact me constantly so I have to be having some impact of my own. But my heart has yet to get the memo. It continues to argue saying the life I live is without impact.
It’s due to this constant inner struggle that I chose this quote. It’s a dynamic and beautiful reminder that no matter the perspective we have on the person or situation, we are touching and impacting the world. We leave something of ourselves with each person we meet, no matter how brief. It’s an incredible concept for sure. And it sparks within me a sense of excitement and adventure because I never know who I will encounter each day and I find myself inspired to leave my mark as intentionally as possible. Some moments it’s as basic as using my waitress’s name each time they come to the table, just so they know they are seen and appreciated. Or perhaps its by asking my son questions about his school day that show him he matters and is important to me. If I have the opportunity to leave more of a mark, I will, but I don’t think it’s always necessary. The littlest things can have the greatest impact and that it what I want for the world. The bigger the impact, the bigger the ripple effect!
Take the time to leave your mark on the world through the interactions you have and make note of how they impact you as well. Be present and intentional. Mister Rogers had it right. Won’t you be my neighbor?
Sarah Deats is the Hope Inc. Stories Inspiration Engineer. Her goals are to make a connection with everyone that she can while building community, spreading hope, and sparking change. She believes that while life may not be easy, it is never lived alone.