Ripple Effect

Kindness has a ripple effect.The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has created a ripple effect around our nation and others as well.   A seemingly innocent request amongst celebrities has become a nationwide phenomena.  Now folks from all walks of life know what ALS stands for and this ripple effect has created nationwide awareness of the disease.  ALS stands for Amyotrophic Lateral sclerosis, often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.  It’s a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord and then to the muscles throughout the body.  This devastating disease needs more research and with a ripple effect, research dollars are pouring in nationwide.

It’s interesting how social media has changed our society in a way we could have never imagined.

I love the ripple effect, which got its name from the ripples created in the water.   What I like most about it is that the positive effects of one person can be seen by several.  Think of “pay it forward”.  And just as a positive ripple effect exists, a negative ripple effect can counteract.

Recently, I was involved in my own downward spiral with the ripple effect.  One seemingly innocent request, approved my supervisors, turned into an office drama, which in the end led me to positive corrective steps.   I won’t bore you with too many details, basically, I asked for my cell phone to be paid for by my office as I use my cell phone a lot for work, and it would have given me an equal “raise” as far as my other colleages received.  Both my direct supervisors approved, however, others in the office got involved and in the end, not wanting to continue the negative energy of the situation, I decided to pay for the phone bill myself.   What happened afterward, quite literally, put me into therapy and questioning whether the work environment I was in was serving me anymore.  One person I help out, not my direct supervisor, decided to seek assistance for calendar, travel and other items elsewhere, others in the office gossiped about my request, and then others made requests on my professional time that were most inappropriate.

Fortunately, having a weekend to sort things out proved mighty useful.  I learned that my request made a ripple effect in my office that was not as positive as the ALS bucket challenge.  I had to stop the ripple immediately, and I did just that.  I commanded the universe to cut the cords that were attaching me to the negativity in the office, I started listening to Gabrielle Bernstein presentations “Course in Miracles”, I made an appointment with a therapist for unbiased help on getting me through my day and I made an appointment with a retirement counselor for the pension program in which I participate.

I could have spent my time sulking instead of taking positive action, and wouldn’t you know it, each positive action lead to another ripple effect.  A personal ripple effect in my life, things that I am grateful for rather than resentful of.

Not working for one of the administrators in my office freed up my time to really work with my supervisors on their meetings and events that have some real meaning for them.  It also meant I only work in the office, no overtime and I’ve created a clean separation between responsibilities in the workplace and free time away from work.   The course in miracles helped me to identify small steps everyday that lead to gratefulness, things like getting an awesome $5 Starbucks Card today for filling out a survey, or running into someone from my past over the weekend who was a big part of my life, and we just lost touch, or having a positive ripple effect on someone else.

I have learned that actions I take effect others, and I’ve been more cautious of my words and actions.

What type of ripple effect are you making in the world?   Make some comments below.

Have a great week!

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