The degree to which we allow ourselves to be influenced by others cannot be understated. By “others” we may consider the mass media as well as individuals in our personal and professional circle. We rely on mass media to obtain information in order to stay abreast of local, national and global news, to educate ourselves regarding purchasing decisions of every description. We gain trust and establish loyalty patterns with a particular media source and view the source as credible and reputable. Yet, due to a series of mergers and acquisitions over the past fifty years, ninety five percent of information sources are now owned by only five companies. The impact of their influence on business and society as a whole is profound. They shape our culture and value systems; therefore it is no surprise that there is push-back when it comes to challenging the status quo or even more interestingly, we have more difficulty discerning our core truth. What do we truly believe to be true?
How do we extricate ourselves from the power of their influence? When we read about the down economy, “the great recession” we believe this to be the universal truth. We see the statistics, we hear the news broadcasts, we read the tweets, the blogs, books…the negative headlines are all-consuming. When enough people tell us that “things are really bad…they couldn’t get any worse”, the negative message continues to be reinforced.
Therefore, it is not a surprise that the process of discerning your own reality becomes even more difficult. Ask yourself: “What is my truth”? Dig deep to find your own interpretation of what rings true for you. Are you holding yourself back from taking a risk that would completely re-energize and reinvigorate you; whether it is a new career, or starting a business that is your true passion? Identify the emotion that is standing in your way. Do you associate with negative people? What can you personally do to overcome these obstacles? When your desire to create change is greater than your desire to repeat the same pattern that continues to yield the same result, you will then be ready to let go and respond differently to the negative influencers.