I have realised upon growing up that you really are; a carbon copy of those you surround yourself with; and so as I find myself here, where I am much older then the other children and missing, at times my old environment I think of moral influence.
Young people are influenced by those around them, our influence. We have a duty to be the best person we can be; what we put out into the world, comes back ten-fold. So the woman, who used “stuck here” as a descriptive; for being at an incredible facility aimed at the rehabilitation of children; she has done herself a diservice, because she does not realise the influence she has on those around her and the impact her comments could have.
Moral influence, is morals in our own everyday action and the influence they have on the world around us; because creating a better world and a kind environment is not down to the big, life changing actions; it is smiling at strangers, thinking of others before yourself, being real and living not just for yourself but for the benefit of those around you. How do we do that? You ask me…
Like all great things I cannot tell you the ins and outs, there are no “how to be a good person” instructions (the ten commandments are a good place to start) but I can tell you a story. I met a little girl, she is ten years old and pretty severely disabled, and despite not being able to talk; her and I were ace at playing card games this afternoon, as a team we played and this girl, who you would think upon meeting; could not comprehend the rules of 21, smiled brighter than the sun when she realised we had won. On the surface it may seem like she couldn’t understand; but you never know who is watching or being influenced by you, do not under estimate the power of observation and in all you do, act in a way that betters others, because you never know who is looking up to you.
Moral influence is you deciding for yourself, what is important to you and who you want to be; because those decisions carry more weight then any outsiders opinion of you. Who you are; and what matters to you as a person, those are the building blocks of morals and the beginning of all influence, because as people look to you and see behaviours manifested and accepted, they too do the same; so what do you want this world to be like, what do you want your mark on the world to be; because like the girl I played cards with, you may not think it, but everywhere you go; whoever you are, observation follows you and people are always effected by your actions. Moral Influence, is also being aware of this fact; it is not just acting for yourself but acting for others, for the continuation of what you hold as important to you personally.
You may not be sure of what it is you truly hold as of importance to you, some of you may be young, and impressionable yourselves torn between the popular and your own beliefs; others of you may have thought you knew what you wanted your morals to be, but your lives took a turn and plans changed; so you are at square one.
I have spent the last three weeks side by side through a surgery with my mum; she has endured my the teenage antics and she has comforted me, as my plans, as our plans shaped around us with no control from our own hand; she has been indescribable and I am so thankful, I tell you this because I too am impressionable, finding my way and I too sometimes feel at square one but the root of myself and what I come back to is; dignity
I have spent the last three weeks in difficulty; but someone somewhere has it harder, and so with dignity I pull through everyday. That is what I have always come back to. Your plans change, you are imprinted at times with another persons belief or with out of control circumstances, but with these truths comes a root, something that you always come back to, and like my mum there are always people around that will bring you back; to that place of belief, in what you hold as important and that place of belief within yourself and your own ability to overcome or to influence others.
Dignity; that is why I read books to the children here, that is why I talk to those who cannot reply the same way I can and that is why I smile and wave; because I believe that every child no matter what is cast upon them by that which is above their control; deserves equality in treatment and the dignity of a conversation or simply a smile. That is my belief, it is what I am putting out into the world; hopefully influencing others to do the same.
Find your beliefs and what you want to give this world and if you are still figuring that out, simply take one thing from this: Your actions matter, be aware of the influence you have on others. Because this world; is about no single person, it is about a collective; each of us finding our way but it is through awareness of our influence on each other and those after us that we will better our own journeys and help others along on their own.