“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.”
A few months back I was listening to my favorite podcast and they were speaking about influence, I was so touched by the topic that I vowed that my next topic will be about influence. I had a lot in mind that I ended up forgetting. Then this month of August as I was requesting audios from women to say something to other women since it’s women’s month. One of them talked about influence and I was like this is it, I have to write about influence so here we are.
In this era we are living in we consider certain people to have influence, we even call them influencers but what I have seen is that we all are influencers in our different spheres. Where you are, you influencing someone and you are being influenced by someone. It’s not only the people we call influencers or those who we have termed the most influential people who are influencers, we all are. Your friends, family, colleagues, church members, etc. People you spent most of your time with influence you and you are influencing them. You might be aware of it or might not do it intentionally but you are doing it. You are both a good and a bad influence to someone and you are being influenced both good and bad by someone.
I have words that I didn’t usually use, words like; “mfo”, ” mfethu” but I occasionally find myself saying those names and that is because my friends use those names frequently around me and I end up catching on them. They were never aware that they are influencing me, they were not even trying to influence me but they have. This shows that whether you try to have influence or not you do have it already and you are being influenced also. Another example is that I am not a cereal person but my friend loves cereal in a way that any time of the day she would indulge in weet-bix. When I am with her she would offer me, sometimes I would decline them but sometimes take them, now I occasionally feel like having a weet-bix any time of the day. Like child, “how are you feeling like weet-bix in the afternoon when you don’t even like them?” Influence, that is the answer.
People around us influence us. How we do things, how we respond to things, etc. The movies we watch, the music/podcast we listen to, the TV shows we watch everything has an impact on how our lives are shaped and how we handle and respond to things. That is why you have to be aware at all times of who you spending time with or what you spend time doing it all has an impact on you. 1 Corinthians 15:33 says; ” Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company ruins good morals.” This clearly states that the company you keep affects you so let’s be alert. Everything matters! Even though some things matter more than others. Don’t be ignorant, look what had power over you.
You can be alert by asking yourself three questions:
1. WHO AM I AROUND?
-The major people around you
2. WHAT ARE THEY DOING TO ME? -What are they got me; doing, listening to, reading, going to, thinking, talking, feeling, etc. Look at both the positive and negative influence towards you. 3. IS THAT OKAY? -After you have done this evaluation are you happy with your findings?
Now that know-how you feel about your circle of influence, it’s time to take action and these are the actions you can take:
Decide who to let go and who to keep. Who to follow on socials and who to unfollow. Don’t let negative influences affect you.
- Limited ASSOCIATION
Don’t spend too much time on the wrong things. Priorities! Give major time to major influence. Limit useless/minor people or things. Always remember that Priority and Time matter most!
- EXPANDED ASSOCIATION
-Spend more time with the right people.
-Whatever you have to do, do it. Ask the right questions, read the right books, listen to the right podcast and music, watch the right movies, associate with the right people. -Find like-minded people -Expand your mind, have people who will ask the major questions because it’s not only answers that are important but also questions.
With you controlling the way you are being influenced you are indirectly controlling the way you are also influencing others because we also should strive to be good influencers to people who are around us. The influence you have on people is what they will remember you with when you are long gone, strive to be the type of person who will be remembered for great things, not bad ones. Let’s allow God to season us with Christ so that we will also influence other people with a Christ-seasoned kind of influence!
“Iron sharpens Iron, and one man sharpens another.”