There are so many people out there who want to help. Who really want to make that difference in the world. Who feel called to it, and who get upset every time they see or feel someone else get hurt. And they are sitting at home thinking, "Wouldn't it be nice" and "Maybe someday" and "When I'm ready."
Don't be that person.
Follow that feeling inside that says "I want to do something. I need to be involved somehow. This isn't right. I want to help." It is that feeling that will get you over your insecurities, and your laziness, and your hopelessness, and right into the path of those people out there who need you. And it is in helping others that you will grow and heal yourself.
Don't worry (too much) about hurting others. If you listen to that voice inside that says "I care. I love these people, I love this world, I want to be a part of making it better", then you will help more people than you hurt. And the more you practise helping and healing, the better you will get at it. There isn't a time where you magically become "ready", or where you know enough. The time when you finally know enough and have it all figured out, is going to be some moments after you leave this life. Not any time sooner.
If you sit around waiting to be ready, you will never help anyone. You won't make that difference in the world. And you will never feel the joy of being so intensely wrapped up in your desire help to that you want to give it everything you have and more.
Get busy. Start today. You're never going to be more ready than right now.
Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same.
- Marianne Williamson
There are so many ways you can help. So many people out there for who you can make a very important difference, and who need it badly.
If you're not sure about that, look around you. Chances are, if you are here reading this, then you are one of those many people who are already painfully aware that the ones around you are hurting. Feel lost. Are lonely, and spend many hours a day wondering if anybody even loves them, or cares about them. Who feel like they want to go home, wherever that is. And in response, they either lock up and hide, lash out with little cruelties to the people in their lives, or put on a a mask and pretend everything is fine until one day, it's not.
You know people like this. Maybe you are, or have been, just like this. Whether someone else reached out and helped you through, or you found your way out on your own strength, or even if you are still in that place... you have something very important to give. Understanding. Compassion. Hope that things can get better, that happiness and freedom are possible. You can be their example, or a helping hand.
You have no idea how much a simple gesture, a smile, a kind word, a honest answer from you, can transform someone's life. It can be the fallen groceries you picked up for them, the extra two minutes you spent listening to a collegue's story when you wanted to go, the obvious lie of "I'm fine" that you looked past, the unexpected hug you gave. Maybe they will it shrug off and have forgotten you altogether by the time they get home. Or maybe, your smile in the middle of a crowd was the one thing that got them to remember that there are people in this world who see them, who look at them with something more than disinterest or scorn... and maybe you saved a life. You don't know. You can't know. All you know is that you were there, and you noticed, and you cared. That's how you start.
Those are the simple things. Anyone can do those, and the world would be a much friendlier place if everyone did. There is, however, a lot more than you can do.
Awareness -- At Elfpath, we teach all our students to become more aware of their surroundings, and the people in it. So that you don't have to wait for someone to start crying to know that they are having a really tough day, and so you can reach out to catch them before they fall. With some training awareness and a caring heart, you will always know just where to be and who to help. "I didn't know they were having trouble" won't happen to you.
Skill -- Knowing that someone needs help is one thing, knowing what to do is quite something different. It can be quite daunting to have someone look at you for help, and know that they're depending on you. We can teach you when to help, and how. What to say, in what way, and what they most need at any giving moment. We'll teach you how to provide it. In a very short time, you can get to a place where you can competently handle any problem someone needs your help with. You can make that difference.
Lifting them up -- But there's more to changing the world than finding those with problems and fixing them! With some training you can learn to do something really amazing: to lift people up. To set them free. To help them find who they are, what it is that makes them come alive. There is nothing more beautiful in the world than to see someone else light up inside, to see their eyes start to shine when you have managed to hit something real in them, when you've set them free of something that made them unhappy. In helping someone else to grow, to open up, you've made the world a little more beautiful place. And you've given yourself a amazing gift at the same time.
All Elfpath students are offered the chance to learn how to council, and teach, both within our program and out in the world.
This is your world. And all the people in it, are part of your people. Don't wait around. Become as amazing as you can, make as big an impression as you can... and do so by starting to make that difference to the people around you today. Touch lives. Be here, be real, and let your heart speak.