5 ways you can make a difference in your everyday life
I think it’s fair to say that we are living in highly uncertain times. Whether it’s politics, the economy, our environment or issues closer to home, it can really make you question whether you can really make a difference in the world. And yet as an external optimist, I am personally driven every day to make a positive difference in the world and I know a lot of people in 100 Women share in this drive too. During these times, it’s so important to focus on what you can do and not get overwhelmed by the challenges. Here are 5 ways to make a difference in your everyday life!
1. Step up and be influential
“Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.”
We can often forget or don’t acknowledge, we all have considerable influence. We can influence the thinking and actions of our own family, friends, local community, school or workplace. Consider the opportunities you have to influence others by being a role model, sharing issues of importance or coordinating a project. It could be to encourage kindness and compassion within your own family, joining together with other community members to host local events, using your voice on social media to highlight issues and encourage action or hosting a lunchtime event at your workplace to raise awareness about an issue. How are you using your voice and influence to make a difference?
2. Gift a 100 Women donation this Christmas
“Philanthropy is not about the money. It’s about using whatever resources you have at your fingertips and applying them to improving the world”
Why not gift a 100 Women donation as a Christmas present this year? Or perhaps instead of sharing Christmas presents between the adults in your family, you could join together and donate as a family?
Your 100 Women donation makes a HUGE difference to women and children locally and internationally. The impact of our grants has been immense over the past two years, whether it’s supporting Aboriginal women in the remote communities of the Fitzroy Valley in WA to be community health researchers or providing nearly 5000 women in villages of extreme poverty in Cambodia with safe, clear, reusable menstrual products. Your $$ makes a difference to the lives of others.
3. Volunteer and get involved
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world”
Dedicate your time to serve the community through volunteering. Check out the Volunteering WA website for a range of volunteering opportunities from planting trees, supporting seniors, mentoring a young person, delivering meals or looking after sick or injured animals. Or if you want to contribute your business acumen, you might consider becoming a board member for a community organisation. Board directors can make a considerable difference in the world through directing the visions and impact of community organisations.
4. Consumer are more powerful than you think
“Don’t underestimate the power of the vigilante consumer”
Over our lifetime, just through our purchases, we have enormous power to make a difference. Do you know where your food, clothes or household appliances have come from? And who has made them?
Some considerations you might make:
- buying from and supporting local businesses
- buying environmentally friendly products
- supporting companies that provide fair conditions to staff
Oxfam have created a great guide when buying clothes. Or perhaps it’s time to consider consuming less altogether.
5. Increasing connections
“When the whole world is silent, even one voice becomes powerful.”
Reach out and connect with those who are different to you. Whether it’s a young person, a senior, a person from another religion, language, country, or culture, a person from a different industry background or perhaps a different marital or parental status to you. We each experience the world a little differently. Instead of fearing or judging difference, why not make it a personal mission to be curious and see the world from a different perspective? What I’ve observed in myself when I do this is that people aren’t as different as we think and it reminds me to treat everyone in the way I would like to be treated.
Let’s make the month of December a month truly about giving! Giving our time, knowledge, donations and networks to make a difference to those who need help!