Matter To The World

by Matt Mattson

ob-pn130_bkrvto_dv_20110907164033 We all want to matter, don’t we? I do. Someday when I leave this world I want to know that the life I lived meant something. I want to know that I’ve left a mark on the world.  I want to know that I’ve mattered.

I’m willing to guess that’s a pretty universal desire. But how do we matter?

I’m reading Blake Mykoskie’s book, Start Something that Matters right now, and that question is really ringing loudly in my ears at the moment.  How do we really matter?

There are a lot of ways to matter.  We matter to our loved ones.  We matter to our pets.  We matter to our workplaces.  But the more and more I think about it, one of the best ways to truly matter to the world is… 1) be about something — some cause, some purpose, 2) inspire others to also be about that thing, 3) gather those people together to act on that thing.  This is Social Excellence .

Here’s an excerpt from our new book, Social Excellence: We Dare You ; How Hand Handshakes Can Change The World .

If you want to leave your mark; if you want to establish a legacy; if you want to be remembered; if you want to look back on your life at 109 years old and know that it was all worth it, gather people together around a purpose that matters to you and go. Change the world based on your vision of how it should be.

All great movements started with one or two people sitting around saying, “The world would be better if…”

Sometimes they started slightly smaller with phrases like:
“This town would be better if…”
“Our people would be better off if…”
“This company would be better if…”
“I wish someone in this school would …”
“What really pisses me off is …”
“Why the $#@! doesn’t somebody just …”

All these statements are about changing some part of the world, but ideas alone aren’t enough. Many people have dreamy ideas and do nothing with them. True revolutionaries understand two things:

  1. You have to actually DO something.
  2. You’ll have more impact on the world if you don’t do it alone. In fact, the more people you have helping, the larger your impact is likely to be.

Right after that section of the book, we share the story of Blake Mykoskie and TOMS shoes as an example of Social Excellence.  See, so many people think Social Excellence is just about being nice to people — it’s about that, but about so much more too.  Connecting with people, shaking hands, having conversations, building relationships are the building blocks that make it possible to gather others together around your cause.

Want to matter to the world?  Start by shaking some hands today and see where it leads.