Changing the world one action at a time

Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little.

Edmund Burke

I used to be this very person. I thought if I couldn’t ‘change the world’ by doing something BIG then why bother doing anything at all.

It was then I realised the importance of those little things, because all of those little things add up. And imagine – if everyone in the world did ONE little thing to make a difference – be it smile at an elderly person, saying hi to the person walking towards you on the street, donating a couple of hours of your month to a cause, calling your Mum, not joining work colleagues in a daily bitch session, donating a few dollars, recycling, practising patience when you drive, the list goes on. Just imagine what the world could be like.

16 thoughts on “Changing the world one action at a time

  1. You are so right. As I was reading your post, I thought of my weight loss clients who have the same kind of thinking, but in the way they take care of themselves.

    Instead of doing one or two small things and allowing those changes to make a difference in their body and health, they get stuck in believing that they must do it all… eat perfectly with no exception or exercise for a very specific amount of time and in a certain way. Anything less means failure, which means giving up and eating whatever they want.

    So I love this reminder that ONE change can make a difference. It does in the world…and it does in ourselves.


  2. Two factoids. 1. Many of my children received a wonderful education at a private high school “Edmund Burke”. While they had no idea what that meant (at the time), they understand the value of his words and the intent of his direction.
    2. the world is changed by little actions perpetuated each moment; the sum of which yield great change. Don’t underestimate the power of your one perturbation!

  3. First visit here.
    It is indeed the little things we do that can sometimes make the biggest difference. I did this once and it had a massive impact upon my life. Just a conversation with a down and out guy on a train.

  4. I think that it is all about being positive, and doing whatever you can. It doesn’t need to be big, as you have said it might be only a smile…I also discovered that it works for businesses. I have set up a small business(without really believing in it, because I wanted something BIG) and, little by little, it is taking off nicely…

  5. Great reflection Janine! You’re right, it’s one person at a time. As long as there are people like you, willing to change the world to make it a better place, it’ll get better over time.

  6. One of my very favorite movies is Death To Smoochie.
    There’s a line that I like to bust out all the time, myself, “You can’t change the world, but you can make a dent”- now, think about it. If we were ALL making dents, why, we could change the world, now couldn’t we?

    Glad to see you’re chipping away at your corner. 🙂

  7. It’s amazing how the world DOES change when we each do small things. It may not impact your world when you give a smile, but the other person has gained a little happiness. After reading this, I realize I need to go call my mother! LOL Thanks 🙂

  8. Great post, Janine! I think that it is definitely important to remember that we are responsible for what we can do, not doing everything. It reminds me of the Parable of the Talents. The real issue wasn’t making so much, but not doing anything with what you have. It’s too bad some people use that as an allegory for supply-side economics instead of improving the world, which was I think the whole point of the story.

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