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circle of influence

In Stephen Covey’s all time best-seller 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Covey talks about spending time in your “Circle of Influence.”  The idea is simple.  The most effective people spend more time on things that they can control than what they cannot.  And, as Covey points out, when you spend more time on those things you can control, your Circle of Influence often actually grows.

I am reminded of this the morning after any Election Day.

When you are working on a campaign, you are spending time in your Circle of Influence.  You are promoting, talking and educating people about an issue on which you care deeply.  In doing so, you are investing time in that circle.  It’s productive and (often) powerful.

Then, on Election Day, those who exercise their right to vote are in their Circle of Influence too.  You take the time to cast your ballot so your voice can be heard.

But what do you do after that?  Many of us worry and lament and complain about the outcome of the election.  We might even take to social media to express our frustrations.  It’s totally understandable.  But it’s not in your Circle of Influence.  You (and I) can change nothing by doing so.

So on this day after the Election, you might find yourself on the wrong side of an outcome.  The election (whatever election it was) might not have gone your way.  It is frustrating (trust me, I understand).  But as you start today it’s important to bring your focus back to your Circle of Influence.

Ask yourself this:  What can I do to make things better today?

Now take your time, energy and talent…and do that.

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