Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Circle of Influence

Many of us get worked up or anxious about things that we have little or no impact on. We worry if the boss has ulterior motives for his actions. We worry what other people think of us. Energy is expended that can be used for better things. 1959 Cadillac wheel

Author Stephen Covey describes it as two circles.  The large circle is called the circle of concern and the smaller circle inside it is called the circle of influence. The inner circle being the actions we can control or influence. The outer circle being items we are concerned about but, is beyond our direct control.

When we concentrate our efforts on the inner circle on things we can control it makes it stronger and larger. Increasing it’s power over the outer circle of our concerns, with it’s positive energy. We have more control over our own destiny and influence. We become proactive instead of reactive.

2010 Chevrlet Camaro RS


Should we expend our time and negative energy on items we have little or no power over it shrinks the inner circle of influence. We become reactive and what we have control over shrinks. When you concentrate on the concerns very little is accomplished in your inner circle.

Think of much like the Serenity Prayer:

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference

---Reinhold Niebuhr

While we cannot always control the environment or or actions against us we can control our response to it. Picture the Circle of Influence like the wheels on a car. Sports cars usually have large rims and thin tires. This enables them to have more control on the road therefore having more influence on the the vehicle where you are going and how fast. If your riding on tires like on an older larger automobile the rims(inner circle) were smaller and tires bigger giving a softer ride with less control of the vehicle. Which one would you rather drive?

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