Influencing your own society

Over the weekend I saw one of my favourite bands play a show here in Sydney. They’re called Anberlin. They’re Americans, from Tampa. Florida natives who’ve described Australia as like a home away from home. 13 trips I think it is now down under since around 2005 and i think I’ve seen all but maybe 1-2 of those shows. Even saw them in San Francisco one time! It’s safe to call me a glued on fan!

I feel like they are family. Perhaps not the close knit live under the same roof family but more the type who gets together every so often and it feels like you were never apart. The occasions when we get together are always cherished. They are down to earth guys who absolutely love what they do. It’s always a positive experience and when it ends you are sad that it once again is filed away as history.

Bands play a huge role in the cultural fibre of society. Whether they like it or not they are leaders, role models, social influencers and encouragers, Why? Because they are there on stage, spotlights blazing upon them, thousands of fans hanging on the words they sing and also speak between songs. Their presence on social media and in interviews online and in print makes them so accessible.

What they say, matters.

What they think, matters.

They actually have a responsibility for the greater good of this world. Truth be told a lot of them set a poor example. An even bigger portion of them mean well but could probably do a lot better than they are.

When you think about it all bands and artists have a duty. A duty as influencers to send messages that create wellness and harmony. They have a job to promote respect and responsibility. To show examples of love and kindness.

When you are in that concert hall and your favourite band is playing and everyone is on a high and loving it. That is the same place i wish we all were in outside in the real world.

By that i mean that in that moment we are all in unison. We are not different. We are like minded in that moment. We may be different people from different races with different stories and different beliefs; but in that place we are not so different. We are people in the same place enjoying life in the same way.

It’s a special place. Perhaps that’s part of the reason we leave concerts in this particular mood of positivity. Like we’ve spent the previous 2 hours feeding off a positive vibe created by the like mindedness of all in that room??

For me it helps when it’s a band like Anberlin. Because when I put all their musical input aside I see a group of guys who a have likemindedness similar to mine. The things that are important to them are things i value myself. That really helps when it comes to supporting bands or artists.

Why?

Because before anything else we are people first. We have hearts and minds that long for things or care deeply about the things around us. It’s like the band is simply the platform or tool to do a greater good.

Examples are set and followed. They do make a difference. The choices we make not only impact ourselves but also those around us. They can be a little like a set of traffic lights. Telling us what to do. When to go and when to stay. We read the examples set by others in much the same way. How we read them will determine how we react.

It’s so important to make sure the examples we set ourselves are good ones and responsible ones. There’s always a consequence to our actions.

A few times lately I’ve been told at work that people love working with me. That I have a calming influence on people and that I am always just so easy to work alongside. That’s a nice thing to be told. But crucially, and I don’t want to sound big headed by saying this, but perhaps it reveals just something of my character. If people can pick up on a vibe that is positive then the influence that I’m having is a right one, and one that I want to keep setting.

To me this is just a case of me being me. There’s no effort. There’s no mindfulness to adopt a certain approach. It just happens. It’s a natural thing. My influence has a way of intangibly affecting others around me and in that way I am influencing my own social setting.

Social influencers is certainly a modern day term. We see them promoting stuff on Facebook and Instagram….Twitter as well. Often they are promoting products looking to break in to markets. They are now a very effective tool for social media!

But i wonder about ourselves and our ability to be social influencers in our own market? Our circle of friends? Our workplace? Our family? How we carry ourselves within those circles does matter and it does influence those around us. When the spotlight is on you you become easily seen. You are in focus. What you do, how you react, will make an impact.

The choice is yours.

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