“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
— Mahatma Gandhi
I turned on the news this morning just to catch up on what’s going on, and turned it off in less than a minute. I could get the whole picture by just reading the massive headlines at the bottom of the screen, but really I turned it off because I could feel myself getting angry with the situation in Ukraine.
“Why can’t this guy see that he’s needlessly hurting millions of people?”
“What is wrong with him?”
“What can I do?”
These questions came at me rapid-fire, with no answers. Frustrated, I opened a book that my mom had sent me about being a good dad, one of those read-a-page-a-day deals. If you know me, you know that I don’t like inanimate objects telling me what to do (I know, I’m working on it), so I intentionally flipped to a different page and it started with Gandhi’s quote above. It’s funny how these things come together.
I see this very insightful quote from a couple different angles. First, before I can expect anyone else to change, I need to model that change myself so that I’m believable. The old adage that when you point your finger at someone else, there are three fingers pointed back at you is so true in the sense that if I’m asking someone to be more humble, more compassionate, more world-centric, my request holds no weight if these are flaws of my own. And so we must do the inner work, always, so that when we step up and demand accountability we have a strong platform to stand on.
Secondly, if I genuinely model that change that I wish to see in the world – if as many of us as possible can do that – we can make a difference! It may be a super-long stretch to infer that if everyone reading this message models positive relationships with others, love for humanity, and strength against hatred, that Putin will call off his dogs. But we live in a very connected world right now where information travels with the speed of light. As disconnected as social media has made our society as we share our false avatars with people we don’t even know, we have the power if we choose to to share our real feelings and hopes and demands for a peaceful world. We don’t even need to attack others that we think are wrong. We just need to lead with our hearts and remind the world that there is a different way.
The next big potential tyrant in the world who is being fed negativity and hate might not follow me on Instagram or read these words. But he might follow someone that follows me, or further on down the algorithm. I believe that if we can model the change that we want to see in this world, we can actually make an impact.
At the end of 2021, I fulfilled a long personal journey to become an Unbeatable Mind coach. Unbeatable Mind is an integrated body-mind-spirit training program that has impacted my life in a big way and I wanted to share it with others. If you want to see how you could “be the change” that we all as individuals – and the world as a whole – desperately need, please reach out. We have a cadre of 10 leaders from the CrossFit Kent Island community that are meeting on a weekly basis now to discuss how we can master ourselves, so that we can be of service to the greater good. We will be starting a new one within the next couple months, and I’d love for you to join us.
Before we can expect the world to change, we must first change ourselves. And the world needs us to do it now.