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Your values - Make a difference

Updated on July 6, 2011

One person can make a difference

Every individual makes an impact in the small microcosm he/she lives in. Each one of us can make a difference in the lives of others by our values and also enrich our lives in the process. Heard this familiar saying “if you can’t beat them join them”, a very negative and defeatist perspective of life. I believe, even if you are the only one doing good, never tire of doing good. Your words, actions and behaviour whether you realize or not, has an impact on the lives of those around you.

I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” Helen Keller

I heard the story of the starfish a long time ago in my early adult life and that made a difference in my life. I am sure most of you have heard it, it may help to watch it again at the end of this article, I have put it there just for you!

Purpose driven life ? Your values make your life purpose driven

I would like to take this quote from Ralf Waldo Emerson to explain my point. “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, and to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well”.

Yes, I do believe that the purpose of life is not just for enjoying it, but to live it meaningfully and making the difference. Is it difficult to make the difference? I honestly don’t think so. We do not have to do something great to make a difference, it is enough to do what we do well, with consideration for others and we would have touched lives and have made the difference.

Your values - your personal values can make the difference

Your values, the ones that you believe in, hold on to and adhere to in your life, are the ones that set you apart from the others. They make you unique and define the person that you are.

Your values are the expression of your character. Your values and how you stand up for them show your strength of character. But most of all they determine the direction which your life takes.

Making a difference in your everyday life

Love, compassion and respect for people are not only good values to practice, but they are values that can change the world. I can make a difference in the world I live in by practicing just these principle or core values with the people around me. Just imagine a world where people practice all these values, there will be peace, justice, equality and a wonderful environment for growth. But do you ask “what is the use of me alone practicing these values? Can I make a difference?” think again. If you have treated people with love, respect, and compassion you will find your world is so beautiful, filled with love and just the place where most people would want to be. Remember Mother Teresa  and what she could do with love, compassion and respect.

Honesty and integrity when practiced in your personal life can touch the life of many. If you refused to take office stationery home, however small it is, it could over the years save money for the organization that you work for, but more than that, you can by doing so, set an example for your colleagues and subordinates to follow. Being honest in your dealing and speech makes a great impact on your children, telling them to be honest is not half as good as letting them see what an honest person you are. I learnt honesty from my father who never so much told me to speak the truth but I have seen him live a life of complete honesty.

Core values

Hard work, perseverance and striving for excellence will no doubt make you successful, but they speak a lot about you as a person, they speak of your attitude. These values speak about your motivation, your determination to keep things going despite obstacles and it tells people that you never give up and you are dependable.

Your values make you a person that others want to follow. You make a difference by the fact when others give up and slacken, you hold on. This is a quality that can take you higher and higher in your career and your life. To quote Ervin Johnson (Magic) “You're the only one who can make the difference. Whatever your dream is, go for it.’

Yes, you will make the difference in your family, with the society around you and with your colleagues.

Commitment and Passion

A rolling stone gathers no moss. Without commitment, you will gain nothing. Commitment is that anchor that keeps you focussed on your goals, while passion is the drive that propels you towards your goals. Without commitment and passion, life would be meaningless and absolutely uneventful.

Positive Attitude

“There is a little difference in people but that little difference makes a big difference. That little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it’s positive or negative.”- W. Clement Stone.

“You cannot tailor-make the situations in life, but you can tailor-make your attitudes to fit those situations.’ - Zig Zigler.

Attitude, especially a positive attitude, spells hope and optimism into everything that you take up. Even the bleakest of things seem to have a silver lining for people with a positive attitude and such people come out as winners despite the obstacles that they have to face. Those with a negative attitude make the most interesting tasks seem miserable and the most interesting people seem dull and lifeless. This is what your attitude can do to your perception. Your attitude can make a huge difference in your life and achievements.

Is your life purpose driven?

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Is making a difference an important part of that purpose?

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Adaptability to Change

Change is the only constant in life. This is the most clichéd saying, yet the most relevant. The ability to change and adapt to situations and circumstances is called growth. When we are unable to accept change, we become stagnant, and as all stagnant things do, we putrefy, stink and become the breeding ground for all unwanted thoughts, habits and attitudes. Every moment, the environment around us keeps changing. Nothing is stagnant, and if we need to be a part of a changing environment, we need to adapt and progress as we move from day to day. Often we wish that the people around us would change, the situations and circumstances would change - that is a lot of wishing. If we want something to change, as Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi put it - “We must become the change we want to see in the world.” We really need to change first, if we want to see a change around us. Make a difference and you will see the difference. Change is all about making choices, so make sure that you make the right choices. Right choices are based in the values that you hold. It is important to make the right choices to make a difference.

Finding Balance in life

All of us need to have a balance in life. We need to have our priorities right and strike the right balance. Yes, we have so many things to do, so many goals to reach and so many places to be in, but setting your priorities will help you determine which the most important thing is and where you need your focus to be.

Be a learner.

Most people when assigned a job or task that they don’t care for too much have such a negative attitude. They spend most of the time complaining and cribbing, so much so that even though they spend considerable time doing the task, they never learn anything out of it. A willing person with a desire to learn would learn a trick or two even from the most boring of tasks. The difference in attitude makes a world of difference in the way we learn.

Be a teacher

Transfer your values to others. Leave an imprint and mark on the society so that the same values and morals that guided and lifted you can lift others and make a difference in their lives and in their microcosm.


“Success andhappiness are not matters of chance, but of choice.”- Zig Zigler.

You need to plan, prepare, execute and expect to win. You need to have your goals set. These goals need to be definite, precise, clearly set, and realistic, but you need the determination and persistence to get what you want. “You cannot climb the ladder of success in a costume of failure”- Zig Zigler.

Be a winner -  Go make the difference

“You were born to win, but to be a winner, you must plan to win, prepare to win, and expect to win.”- Zig Zigler.

Winning is not all about yourself and your goals and the success. It is about the difference you make. A winner is one who not only climbs up the ladder, but makes sure he pulls up a few others along with him. If you want to be a winner, teach others those things that you have learnt. Share with others your knowledge and wisdom, so that it does not die with you, but spreads and helps others to rise up with you.

Life is all about making a difference. At the end of the day, if you have made a difference, no matter if you are rich or poor, educated or not, an important figure or not, you are still a winner because these are the only things that people say about you long after your time on this Earth is over. So today, become the difference and make the difference

The story of the starfish ... a story of what one person can do.......


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    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Thank you Siverbutterfly, the star fish story has been my favorite for a long time. It is the message that each person can make a difference, that I love. Thank you for the visit, the read and the comment, I greatly appreciate it!!

    • siverbutterfly profile image


      9 years ago

      This hub is fully loaded with good advice. I especially love the story of the starfish. You put so much time and effort on this, and I, for one, appreciate it! thanks for the great tips.


    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Peggy Thank you for your generosity. I do appreciate the help, and yes thanks for the comment and following me. God Bless!

    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Genna isn't love the most precious gift that you can give others. Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment, I do appreciate this. God Bless!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      9 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Fantastic hub brimming with excellent advice. Going to tweet this and you have a new fan! Also rating this useful and beautiful.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      9 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      "Love, compassion and respect for people are not only good values to practice, but they are values that can change the world."

      No truer words spoken, sofs! Wonderful hub.

    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Always Exploring...yes, our greatest gift is love and with it we can make a difference. Thank you for your kind words. God Bless!

    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Ritchie, glad that you liked it. Thanks for the visit and the comment.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      9 years ago from Southern Illinois

      This is great. Our greatest gift to give is love. Thank you for sharing.


    • richtwf profile image


      9 years ago

      A great Hub with lots of excellent thoughts and messages to take onboard.

      Thanks for sharing and God bless Sophie.

    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Fucsia, delighted to see you as always. we agree on a lot of thing I can see.. just live with love it will make a true..

      The starfish story turned me inside out a long time ago.. I hope it does the same to all who see it.. the world will be a beautiful place.

      Thank you for your kind words, it is truly appreciated!

    • fucsia profile image


      9 years ago

      A very great message, Sofs! We can make a difference, first inside of us, then around us, even just in our little world, like the light of a candle. It is not necessary make a huge thing to make a difference. Just live with love! Thanks for sharing your throught and the starfish story... Touching!

    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Ha! great to hear from you Tim, Karma.. the law of life.. what you sow you shall reap. Yeah it is our values that make us, set us apart and show others the mettle we are made up of.

      The fact that we can make the difference should motivate us to do the best we can.

      Thank you Tim for the support and encouragement, I value it highly.

    • timorous profile image

      Tim Nichol 

      9 years ago from Me to You

      Hey sofs, this is excellent. It just goes to show how short-sighted and selfish, and negative many people are. It's kind of like send out negative vibes, you get negative vibes right back.

      It's true...being positive and trying to make a difference in this world, however small, should be one of your core values. Besides, it makes you feel good. Cheers.

    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Thank you Apostle Jack, I have spoken mostly about the basics and I hope that this hub does make a difference!

      I do appreciate the visit and the comment.

    • Apostle Jack profile image

      Apostle Jack 

      9 years ago from Atlanta Ga

      You said it well.

    • sofs profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      Carie, we just have one life to make a difference, so why not do it. That video made a difference to my life many years ago, I understood that we can go make the difference in this life time itself.

      Glad that you liked this hub and I appreciate you voting it up. God Bless you Carrie!

    • carrie450 profile image


      9 years ago from Winnipeg, Canada

      What a nice hub sofs and the video says a whole lot about how each of us can make a difference in this lifetime.

      Voted Up.


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