This morning I woke up circa 3 AM courtesy of Dewey, one of the warmest, gentlest and loving dogs. He is a COMB* that special breed that looks after you, keeps you on schedule, listens for and alerts you when he knows you need to know (such as fresh coffee is available). Today he no doubt thought I was going to lose the race to the worms with the birds. So after I rose, he walked ahead of me down the stairs into the kitchen, waited patiently by the back door, so that he could shoot out like a cannon-shot as he blasted around the trees and bushes to ensure the horses were still in their corral, squirrels and chipmunks were high in the trees and the moles/voles were underground. He then returned to me at the back door, promptly went inside and went back to sleep.
I on the other hand, did what I do every morning at this time, I read, I listened, and I viewed copious amounts of content from the internet. But today was different. Today I was moved off-center by a piece shared with me concerning WORDS by two of my favorite people (thank you to Molly Cantrell-Kraig aka @mckra1g and Jeff Shuey aka @jshuey – more on these folks in a bit).
No doubt you are saying, really, a piece about words moving you. Take a peek at this gem: The Power of Words from 2009
Watching that jewel, I came upon this piece: The Power of Words 2 from 2010
And after watching these two pieces, if you’re like me, your saying to yourself, “how can I make a difference?
Back to Jeff Shuey – I’ve had the pleasure to have crossed paths with Jeff over the course of the last three years on a regular basis. The gent is a role model in more ways than can be counted, in fact I recommend bringing the abacus if you wish to try. That said, there is one aspect of Jeff that I want to call out – Pay it Forward. Every single Friday you will find Jeff paying it forward – buying the person in the coffee line behind him their coffee; paying the toll for the car behind; opening the door; picking up the dropped article, whatever it takes to improve the lives of those around him. Jeff chooses to make a difference. Engage with Jeff, regularly, you’ll be all the better for it.
Then to Molly Cantrell-Kraig – I’ve not yet had the pleasure of meeting Molly, except through her writing, philanthropy and engagement on various social networks. You see, Molly makes a difference for so many through a foundation she founded: Women with Drive. Here is a bit about Women with Drive: “Women With Drive Foundation (WWDF) provides a car to women in transition in exchange for their participation in an assessment that identifies her particular barriers to independence. Once identified, a two-year plan is established by our participants in conjunction with a WWDF program officer that is designed to build her skill sets so that she may become fully independent.” So please do support Women with Drive and make a difference. And, by the way, if you ever need an editor/writer – that would be Molly – reach out to her, she does know all the big-words.
So, I’m content with having seen two videos, delivering the message, go make a difference and then my inbox lights up with a piece from a professional contact of mine, Cristina Speck, she pointed me to this jewel, created in 2009: “The Power of Words: 50 words that lift, motivate and inspire”
I consumed the video and the 50 words, coupled with the first two and there was no doubt in my mind that today was clearly meant to be a day to think about word choice and how those choices can make a difference. Not content, I dug a bit deeper to learn who was behind the first two videos – turned out it was the writing of Andrea Gardner who penned a book, “Change Your Words, Change Your World” which was published in April 2012 (and is now in my library to read – thank you Kindle). As it so happens, Gardner has been addressing word choice since 2006. I’ve apparently been under a rock for a good many years.
In sum, as making a difference sometimes doesn’t need words, my hound Dewey has mastered the art of making a difference by taking care of me; Jeff has masted the art of making a difference by living “pay it forward”, Molly digs in and lifts others through her deeds, putting women at risk in a vehicle and removing the perceived shackles of dependency and Cristina, who has focused her efforts on international policy creation, as we all know, those words are so important as we communicate across this ever flattening world we live in. All are making a difference. You can too!
Words! They are important.
*COMB: Canine of Many Breeds – found in Animal Shelters