I have been asked the question before, I have read books that have asked the reader to think about the people who have influenced them in their life. But I’ve never really given it as much thought as perhaps I should have, until now.
This is cheating a little bit as it’s two in one. We may not always agree, but it goes without saying that my parents shaped me throughout the earlier part of my life and continue to do so.
I saw my Dad fight for fairness, sometimes to his own detriment, sometimes knowing he would not be able to change anything. But he still tried and upheld his values, and fought for what he thought was fair. Likewise, my Mum is one of the kindest people I have ever met. Almost too kind, always putting other people ahead of herself, always accommodating me and my sister regardless of what this meant for my Mum.
fairness, kindness and determination
They also taught me never to give up, to get back up if anything knocks you down. To not stop something from getting the better of you or holding you back. I was diagnosed with epilepsy when I was 16 and it took a few years to properly control. Throughout they installed me with a sense of determination to not let my epilepsy stop me leading a ‘normal’ life, to not to let it hold me back (of course I did need to make some reasonable adjustments to my life). This is still something I live by today.
For not wanting to include the name of someone who may not want to be identified, I will call her Kim.
Kim was my manager between late-2014 and what will be mid-2020. I was 31 when Kim started managing me and she has been more a mentor, encouraged me to challenge myself and pushed my own personal and professional development where not even I had before.
This has all influenced my entire approach to life. I have grown and developed more over the last five years than I did in my previous 11 years in work
I feel I am a better person, I am more assured of who I am and definitely happier
I feel I am a better person, I am more assured of who I am and definitely happier. I am in a place where I am close to really knowing what I want, and Kim has had a big influence in getting me here. I think a lot of what I write on this blog is both a direct and an indirect result of the influence she has had on me.
Likewise, for not wanting to include the name of someone who may not want to be identified, I will call him Chris.
Chris was also my manager, if only for a very brief period of time. But it is not Chris in his role as a manager that has influenced me, but his belief in giving people opportunities that other people may not have given. He took a chance on people and gave them a shot. Sometimes this worked out, other times not so much.
Giving people opportunities, having faith in others
I knew Chris for no more than a couple of years, but his faith in people, taking that chance, is something I have and will always carry with me. I have tried to repay this to other people. I always try and give people opportunities wherever I can. If I’m bordering on uncertainty with a decision, I will always take that chance, put my faith in someone, give a person that shot.
There have been many, many other people who have influenced me, shaped me into the person I am today. But I can’t pick everyone.