As I went for a swim this afternoon in my neighborhood pool, I finally spoke to someone I often see. We usually just exchange friendly smiles and casual hellos. As we began talking today, she realized that we often see each other at the gym and responded, "Oh, you're the runner." Trust me, I'm far from a "runner" but I am getting there.
My point? It suddenly hit me that every action really does make more of an impact than we think. Sometimes, we do things that are out of the ordinary, things that aren't true to our character, things that aren't "us". At times they are positive and other times negative. We can rationalize the negative decisions by assuring ourselves that it was just a one-time thing. But what about that person that only knows us from seeing us at that one moment?
That's the impact you made on that person. That is how they will think of you. That is how they will remember you. If someone only sees me running at the gym, they will think of me as a runner. Likewise, if someone only sees me at the library studying, they will probably think I'm a nerd. It's all about context; not everyone knows the whole story.
It's true that every action has a reaction. It's also true that every action makes an impact, whether we realize it or not. It's just the severity of the impact that varies.
I failed to mention earlier that my new friend is significantly older. Surprisingly, I was intrigued by her stories rather than bored. She has been through a lot, to say the least, and yet she is still open to new opportunities. Inspiring, right? There is so much that I have managed to convince myself wasn't meant for me, not right now at least. But that's the wrong mindset. It's important to be open to the possibilities and welcome the opportunities as they arise with open arms. It's the only way to experience, feel, live.
What if it doesn't work out? Ah, but what if it does.