No man is an island. And yet, if you make a great decision or if you make a horrible mistake, the responsibility lies ultimately on your shoulders. Barring that you are not a victim of some physical circumstance or mentally impaired. Sometimes it can boggle the mind how many influences have lead us up to the point we are now at in our lives. Some of these influences, although they vary in quantity and experiences, we still share these commonalities of influence in no particular order; family, friends, money, career, home, health, advertisements, religion, travel, school, community.
People: There is a huge database of people who influence us, some we are so close and live with and others who are just ships passing in the night. Some we never even given a second glance until we hear something about them that interests us, “hey, did you hear Bob 2 blocks down, sold his house and move to Florida”? Other people we would die for, our family, spouse, children, friends, loved ones.
Career path (and money): Good, bad or indifferent your chosen career and your spin on it have led you to this place in your life. It is usually career decisions that make up over 75% of our home and financial decisions. What town and state will we live, who will be our close friends, and how our lifestyle will be affected. Money usually is included although money can also come from investments, inheritance, lottery, etc. it usually comes from that 4 letter word = work.
Health: Depending on your age, health may or may not even be on your radar yet. These days though, I think even younger people are starting to pay attention to their health earlier and earlier. Children are now being raised to know all the aspects of what goes in their food and what to eat for good nutrition. Even mental health issues, meditation, yoga, holistic health are all starting to be part of young people’s lifestyles.
Religion: It is not just prescribed dogmas that whatever religion your family grew up in, you will automatically go along, too. These days’ people have found that they can change midstream, go back and forth and back again, and usually there is not a lightning rod that strikes them dead.
Whole Mass Media: Even if you don’t want to admit it; the mass media does influence you. You can fight it, you can pick and choose what you like and don’t like, you can analyze it until your blue in the face, but the media influences every business, school, government, young people, old people, everyone. If you try to stay in one place in your head, it will eventually find you!
So, those are only some of the major influences that have a lot to do with who controls you, I know that may not even be your list. The point is everyone has a list, it starts from you and moves outwards, it’s just not something that comes up that often in day to day conversations. Because ultimately, you are the one who controls how much these influences control your life or not.